Thought I would share with you some observations and what-not from Indy. I went out there for a "Combine Convention" that was basically helping people network who are trying to break into sports. I am working on a Personnel/Scouting job and drove out there this weekend. It was cool but I still couldn't get in the ACTUAL combine to do my own work. But, maybe interesting stuff nevertheless:
One, Michael Crabtree didn't seem to be favoring his foot as I saw him doing interviews in the lobby. Don't know how serious it is, but surely it is as his stock could be in flux. Seems like a nice guy, and I told him as a Jayhawk I was glad to see him going pro.
Outside of the 'interview' hotel where the players were meeting I talked with a Raiders assistant who was actually really nice. He told me all the players give off nice images and attitudes, except for Matt Stafford and he especially had bad things to say about James Laurinitis. Aaron Curry is bringing his 'A' game to this whole combine, by attitude and workouts alone he is easily the most prepared prospect for this weekend.
I met Scott Pioli. He was very nice, although he specified to me that he 'wasn't looking to hire anyone at the time.' Rejection #1. But, the aura of secrecy made him seem suspicious and jerky before I saw him interact with everyone, he really is an animated, happy looking guy. And fortunately, after I talked with him, I ran into local guy who is good friends with our director of scouting, so that was a nice turn of events.
Went to the Fritz Pollard Alliance that honored Tony Dungy. Hell of a guy, along with Mean Joe Green, Mike Tomlin, and John Wooten, Dan Rooney, Bill Polian all great caliber individuals. I wish I had something to say to them..
GM Jeff Ireland (Dolphins) had this advice: Get in the door and ride someones coattails. Basically, Parcells had his mind up that Ireland would be the GM wherever he went.He got that way with Parcells by arguing with him and refusing to be a yes-man. Good advice! He also seemed particularly offended when someone asked him a question, they stated: "I am trying to become a GM as well.." and he sort of shrugged and said, "Well, you're not going to just get hired as a GM you know. Go paint fields or volunteer with a team first and focus on getting really good at each task as it comes along, then you'll see how it works."
Network like crazy. Trite but true. One of my favorite guys to talk to was a sports agent who defied the cliche of a hard-nosed fast talker. He was a real mellow, older guy who answered any question about anything and aims to stay in touch. To me, that's just as good of a contact as someone who can introduce you to someone else.
The guys from SportingNews were there and one was very high on Josh Freeman. I disagree, the guy doesn't seem bright at all and was very error prone. It's a potential only for him and I see a team like the Vikings or Bears trying him as a project, growing impatient and forcing him into the action. I think you guys would've liked talking with them, they definitely can mock it up and have a good debate. The general consensus on Stafford and Sanchez right now: Not busts, but not great, maybe just guys cashing in a payday by coming out early (Still, that's what many said about Matt Ryan)
Lucas Oil Stadium is pretty awesome for an indoor stadium. (I tried to get in and got through security briefly!) Sickly old security guy derived pleasure from catching us and denying us.
ALL of the coaches eat at Hooters, Steak n Shake, and the steakhouses around there. But especially Hooters.
Mike Smith of the Falcons is a very nice, humble guy and I see good things for him in the future, and he was joined to the hip of Tom Dimitroff.
Indianapolis...not great. Enjoy KC.
A lot of the guys my age I talked with were bright, ambitious guys, and in reality they were just glorified sports people with a realistic dream.