Have you ever wondered about the days of the NFL draft, when a team would ship their entire draft for one running back, or one wider receiver, or even one quarterback? And in today's environment, we chuckle to ourselves and say "nobody is that STU pid anymore" and go back to wave after wave of vanilla NFL draft mocks?
The NFL draft runs in cycles.... from the low tide of few trades and little excitement to the high tide of the "mega trades" that make careers for one team and break the careers of others. Much like the cycle of solar sunspots, we've had quite a period of low activity. Few deals. Fewer surprises.
That's about to end in the next few years. I will explain why after the break.
Every year there is a handful of head coaches who are on a hot seat, or are new and looking to make drastic changes. You can pretty much figure in the impact that they will make picking early and trying to make the best deals possible. Many are new to the NFL, or are returning to the NFL after a period, or have been promoted and now find they are dialing the draft board for their respective teams... And every year there is the one coach who trades for an impact guy, or the coach who reaches too far for a need and is blasted in the post draft writeups.
But this year is different. Every 10 years or so, the guys who have been coaching awhile either have saturated on their NFL experience, or their winning streak wanes and they find themselves in the "hot seat". These are not like the guys new to the Head coaching jobs.... they are guys who already have networked, familiar with their teams positions and personnel. They are the Andy Reids and the Norv Turners of the NFL who, despite success, must take it up a notch or face being on the outside of the NFL looking in.
These are the risk takers... these are the guys who have gotten close to the mountaintop with no clue what it takes to get over it, but who have years of what not to do experience to draw upon.
This is a year where over 50% of the NFL coaches jobs are in peril. And they know it.
Despite the sheepskin approach, don't buy it. We've already witnessed Mike Shannahan trading the future for the chance to pick his franchise quarterback for this year.
Look for more risk taking, not less. This is a year that, much like the solar flares from this winter, will come bold and often throughout the three days of the NFL draft.
I hope you have your seatbelts ready. Let's go draft us some NFL players!