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Bill Parcells warns against emphasizing Pro Day workouts over tape

The Old School approach to the NFL Draft is rooted in a scout's ability to translate what is seen on tape to the team. Former coach and personnel man Bill Parcells says the tape takes priority over everything.

Richard Mackson-US PRESSWIRE
Any conversation regarding the greatest NFL coach of all time has to include Bill Parcells.

He lists Steelers Hall of Fame coach Chuck Noll as one of the coaches who helped him develop his craft over the years, and a paralell can be drawn between the two in the sense they both coached one of the greatest players the game has ever seen (Joe Green, among others, for Noll and Lawrence Taylor for Parcells).

Parcells sent a message of sorts to coaches, general managers, owners and scouts Monday on ESPN's Mike & Mike in the Morning, advising teams not to look too far past game tape of a player in an effort to evaluate them as players.

He said, paraphrased, physicals and individual workouts with players can help to serve as a means to validate what they saw on tape or to see if mistakes were made in their evaluation of that player's film, but using it as a basis of reason to select or not select a player is dangerous.

Parcells (and Noll for that matter) started in an era in which the oversaturation and hyper-analysis of players didn't exist; all they had to go on was tape - and sometimes not even that. The necessity teams had to draft successfully wasn't nearly as prevalent as it is today, and a reason for that could be the scouting landscape wasn't brought together through technology the way it is today.

Of course, teams should check out players at Pro Days, but the lesser-mentioned traits, such as personality, work habits and the simple ability to communicate with a player should be what's viewed, more than, as Steelers coach Mike Tomlin would say, how well they do in Football in Shorts.