One of the most interesting things about tracking the football business is the agency dynamic. Once you know the firms and how they operate, it’s fascinating to see how their various strategies and the risks they take pay off or fall flat.
Here are a few observations on the strength of the top agencies in the ’16 draft as compared to previous seasons. To check out the full list, click here.
- There are around 800 agents certified by the NFLPA in any year at any time, and more than 180 agencies that have had players drafted since 2007, but only 22 firms have had a player drafted each of the last 10 years.
- There were 77 firms that had players drafted this year (2016). That’s way less than ’15, when there were 93, and less than in ’14, too (86).
- Part of the consolidation of power in fewer agencies was because mega-agency CAA soaked up so many draft picks. Almost 12 percent of all the picks in the draft (30) were CAA clients. On average, four picks per round came from the firm.
- CAA is all by itself in first place over the last 10 years with 89,173 value points. That’s more than twice the total of the second-place firm, Athletes First, with 44,546.
- The scope of CAA’s recruiting strategy this year made for a few oddities. For example, for the first time since we’ve been tracking the draft by value points in ’07, CAA represented a seventh-rounder. Raider OG Vadal Alexander (7/234, LSU) had that distinction this year.
- What’s more, CAA had two sixth-rounders, double their input of same since ’07. Chargers FB Derek Watt (6/198, Wisconsin) and 49ers WO Aaron Burbridge (6/213, Michigan St.) both went sixth round this year.
- The top 10 teams in value points since ’07 are, in order, CAA, Athletes First, Lagardere Unlimited, Relativity Sports, Five-Star Athlete Management, Octagon, SportStars, SportsTrust Advisors, Priority Sports and Rep 1 Sports. It’s especially impressive that Five-Star remains in the top five considering the firm was absorbed into CAA last year.
- Rep 1 Sports, on the strength of representing the top two picks in the draft, moved up four spots from 14 to 10 this year. It’s their first appearance in the Top 10 since we started tracking value points totals.