"Draft/Evaluate/Scout traits, not production” is a professional football adage in evaluating a player for the NFL draft. A player might have had very good or very poor production in college, but there could have been reasons for that. For example, the player could have been injured, or could have been playing in a very good or a very bad system. A player’s traits (size, speed, strength, agility, football intelligence) must be looked at in determining possible success at the professional level.
“Draft traits, not production” was cited in print in 2012. New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick is sometime credited with the adage, but it’s not known who said it first.
@mkomm You bet. Here’s what I’ll say re: stats… Draft traits, not production. Check out, for example, Richard Seymour’s senior year stats
7:51 PM - 21 Mar 2012
NFL Spin Zone
NFL Draft 2012: What Will The Carolina Panthers Do With The 9th Overall Pick?
BY FIELD YATES - MAR 29TH, 2012 AT 6:00 PM
Here’s a recommendation: seek traits, not production.
Reminder of the oldest adage is scouting college players: Draft traits, not production. Chiefs did last night.
7:08 AM - 27 Apr 2012
09-16-13 06:04 PM
EPSN Insider: In scouting, the first lesson learned is to evaluate traits, not production. After all, the numbers don’t always tell the full story—not by a long shot.
Posted 14 April 2014 - 05:07 PM
Another thing, I heard a scout today say Bill Belichick once told him this is how it works, you draft traits not production.
A lot about #Pitt QB Tom Savage. Putting out his stats & comparing to other QBs. Pro scouts are looking at his traits, not production.
9:57 PM - 23 Apr 2014
2014 NFL Draft: Matt Miller’s Updated Scouting Notebook
By Matt Miller , NFL Draft Lead Writer Apr 25, 2014
“The Golden Rule”
When I was first getting started covering the NFL draft—as a 49ers draft correspondent for a small website—I sent my rankings, scouting reports and mock drafts to every NFL team. Almost all of them failed to respond, but a few actually did. One of the things I learned from interactions with Michael Lombardi, Tony Softli and Charlie Casserly was “the golden rule” of scouting.
“Scout traits, not production.”
That’s why scouting traits—such as arm strength, accuracy, mobility and vision—and not production is the key to scouting.