Posted by Mark Branstad
FTA has completed a breakdown of each NFL draft pick and their high school athletic background. After totaling the number of draftees with multi-sport high school backgrounds the results are amazingly consistent with the data we’ve been collecting since 2002. Regardless of the sports specialization craze that has swept through our high schools in the past decade it doesn’t appear to have caught on with NFL prospects.
Here’s a pretty cool article about defensive lineman and NFL draft pick, Sean Lissemore, of William & Mary. Sort of brings this multi-sport thing into perspective.
To the good stuff:
Track and field appeared to be the most popular “second” sport with nearly 60% of all players (255 total) having participated in high school. Approximately 50% participated in high school basketball and nearly one in four participated in both basketball, track and field and of course football.
The track and field events most popular with NFL draftees, probably not surprising, was the 100 meters, 4×100 relay, long jump and the shot put.
The average Rivals star rating for the first round (32 players) was approximately 3.5 stars. That average fell to approximately 3.0 stars for the first 100 draft picks and was 2.7 star average for the entire draft, 255 players. This is not an indictment on Rivals rankings but rather look at the average as dictated by the draft.
Just the numbers:
First Round (32 players)
* 19 participated in high school track and field
* 30 participated in at least one high school sport other than football
Top 100 draft picks
* 61 participated in high school track and field
* 88 participated in at least one high school sport other than football
Rounds 1-7 (255 players)
* 152 participated in high school track and field
* 219 participated in at least one high school sport other than football
FTA’ s NFL Draft spreadsheet:
It is a little too much trouble to plug that up here but if you’d like a copy of FTA’s breakdown of each draft pick’s high school background, including specific high school track and field performance data…email me at:
I’d be glad to send, free of course.