2014 NFL Draft: Combine Invites and Caldwell


Feb 25, 2013; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Connecticut Huskies defensive back Dwayne Gratz makes a catch during the NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

With the 2014 NFL Draft Combine coming up this week, an interesting thing to look at is the pattern a general manager forms for drafting players. David Caldwell has been the general manager for all of one full season and only one draft so far, so in all honesty it is rather silly to try to establish a pattern. Small sample size aside, here are the players the Jacksonville Jaguars drafted last year and whether or not they were invited to the combine.

1Luke JoeckelTackleTexas A&MYes
2Johnathan CyprienSafetyFIUYes
3Dwayne GratzCornerbackConnecticutYes
4Ace SandersWide ReceiverSouth CarolinaYes
5Denard RobinsonRunning BackMichiganYes
6Josh EvansSafetyFloridaYes
7Jeremy HarrisCornerbackNew Mexico StateNo
7Demetrius McCrayCornerbackAppalachian StateYes

Obviously the players drafted in the early rounds are almost always going to be combine attendants, but there tends to be more players drafted in the 6th and 7th round who weren’t invited. While his predecessor Gene Smith seemed to always draft a lesser-known player or 4 in the backend of the draft, David Caldwell only selected one player in the 7th round who wasn’t at the combine – Jeremy Harris. New Mexico State isn’t a college powerhouse and Harris wasn’t a highly rated prospect, but he managed to pique the interest of the Jacksonville front office enough to warrant a draft selection.

Clearly there isn’t much to take away yet about Caldwell and the emphasis he places on whether or not he can observe a player at the combine, but we’ll probably figure out more this year. With 10 draft picks currently in their arsenal, the statistical credibility of a study like this will certainly increase.

-Daniel Lago

Yell at me on Twitter @dlago89