2020 NFL Draft Guide: Understanding Draft Grades

It’s Christmas at USN, or erm… Draft Season… so basically Christmas here at USN. Our Christmas tree is game tape, and our gift to all of you is the 2020 USN Draft Guide, we’ll watch the tape (because we have no lives and love it), and break it down for in the #Unfiltered way that only USN can. But, instead of throwing around confusing grades, and numbers and metrics and expecting total understanding, we decided to break down our process a bit. Today we’ll discuss how we grade Quarterback traits.

What traits do we grade?

Remember that your evaluations are your own and as such you can decide which traits you feel are important to evaluate. To keep things simple for Quarterback prospects we usually focus on six key attributes

  • Accuracy
  • Pocket Presence
  • Decision Making
  • Arm Strength
  • Mobility
  • Intangibles

How do we grade?

To keep things from getting overly complicated we typically use a scale from 1-10 on each attribute. To make it as fair as possible we make grades relative to all prospects we’ve scouted. For example, because Josh Allen and Patrick Mahomes each received a 10 in Arm Strength when we scouted them, players will graded based on that same scale to avoid overly confusing grades relative to other prospects. So anyone who scores a 10 in terms of arm strength will be comparable in that trait to Mahomes and Allen.

*Disclaimer: it is extremely rare that any prospect will grade out as a 10 in any trait, as it is my personal belief that a 10 should be saved for a prospects that are truly elite in that trait.

The Grading Scale:

The Following is a our scale for each individual trait grades, they only reflect our assessment of the individual trait that the grade is assigned to. It factors into the overall grade, but it is not the entire overall grade as the Overall grade is a cumulative average of the individual trait grades and will be covered in more detail in the next article.

  • 10: Elite, Rare prospect at this trait, already among NFL’s best
  • 9: Consistently Excellent, Far beyond the average prospect in this trait
  • 8: Very good to Great; On Par with many NFL veterans
  • 7: Good to Very good; Will be asset at the next level
  • 6: Average to Good; Trait not detrimental to development
  • 5: Below Average to Average; Trait Could be detrimental
  • 0-5: Bad to Below Average; Trait is average to below average for a college player, and well below for an NFL Player and could limit the prospect’s future development. Draft with Caution

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