Last night, we welcomed two former NFL scouts, Rodrik David (Falcons) and Kevin Cohn (Jaguars) to our monthly Zoom sessions for new NFLPA contract advisors. It’s always fun to hear from people who are not speculating, but who actually helped put together draft boards for actual NFL teams. Rodrik, who works for Agent Live 360, has been a guest in the past, but this was Kevin’s first time with our guests.

Here are a few takeaways from the session.

  • If an agent pitches a player for a team’s local pro day, the team “applies” to accept the player with the league office. Within a couple days, the league lets the team know if the player is too distant from the team, geographically, to be invited. Rodrik said he’d seen players who played as far away as 90 miles from team headquarters get approved by the league office. Kevin said the Jags usually stayed within 60 miles for invitees, as a rule of thumb.
  • The most players Kevin or Rodrik had seen at a local pro day was 80. That’s pretty big. But the point is, if a team says it’s “full,” but you find out there are only 20-30 coming in, keep pushing. Tactfully, of course. 
  • Sometimes, a team who lacks confirmed numbers on a player who isn’t in their metropolitan area will ask the team that is in his metropolitan area to invite him to their local workout. I don’t know how often this happens; I just know that it does happen periodically. Therefore, if your client is eligible for (but not invited to) a local pro day, see if you can get another team to put in a good word for him.
  • Let’s say you have a player who’s completed his pro day and isn’t getting any nibbles from teams. Rodrik and Kevin recommended that the agent call teams and say, look, I know my client is strictly a tryout player. But could you consider him for a tryout? It’s not the preferred route, obviously, but at least the agent is working for his client, and maybe the player gets an opportunity he wouldn’t not otherwise have gotten.
  • If a player goes undrafted, unsigned and uninvited to a tryout, don’t sit around waiting for a team to call. Take it as the league saying he’s not good enough — yet. Your role as his agent is to find him more opportunities to grow, whether that’s the CFL, USFL, XFL or even indoor football. Don’t keep calling, emailing and praying. Accept that he’s still got to grow by league standards.

Our next Zoom session will take place in a couple weeks, and will focus on the post-draft UDFA signing process. It’s a weighty and multi-layered process for many teams, and there’s a lot to know. If you’re an ITL client, you’re already invited, and it’s free. If not, go here and rectify that. Hope to see you later this month. We also recommend you sign up for the Friday Wrap, which comes out this evening. It’s free. Sign up for it here.