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From Dave-Te...Why Sy and I Do What We Do

nflscouting : 4/16/2017 1:16 pm
I started scouting when Al Davis hired me at age 14 in 1968. Over the years, I have seen the great & not so great draft analysts come and go. Tom Hepler & Son, Jim Sabo, The Marassco Brothers, all that I hold in high esteem. I had the pleasure of pushing the buttons to bring Rob Rang into the fold when Frank Cooney snatched me for the start-up of NFLDraftScout. Since then, ho-hum to the ESPN & other draft sites. That is, until I stumbled on this Corner Forum last year.
Appreciate Sy for what he is - tireless in his efforts to bring a view, a perspective to those who have 9-to-5 jobs, kids & other distractions that prevent them from being Sy. Sy follows my formula - leave no stone unturned, work 25 hours a day & 8 days per week. Impossible task? I can give you a littany of oh-craps out of my mouth for all the personal sacrifices I had to make doing this job over the years.
Yes, it paid well, but the other day, one of my daughters commented that I had not taken a vacation since 1983. What about all the Hula Bowls, trips to the Japan Bowl, the postseason, etc. All family vacations were circled around a work event.
Hey, when Laurie got sick six years ago, I made her a deal - no matter how bad this gets, we are in this together & DON'T give up the fight. The last two years, I had to give her 24/7 attention, coming off the road. I readjusted, turning to films, films and more films, while coordinating with 26 teams & over 300 scouts.
Her last three months, everything went crazy. Her liver shut down, resorting to me feeding her shakes, ice chips & anything light to give her some substance. She wanted to die, so much so, she had her lawyer draw up a do-not-resusitate order.
You know where I told the lawyer to shove that paper - in the last thee months, I revived her six freaking times, hating myself each time, but also looking at the result - what do I tell the grand kids.
Yes, it was a horrible death for her, so much so, that for every breath I took in this scouting business for 50 years meant absolutely nothing to me. How crazy did I get - sold everything down to my underwear & a month after he death, moved all the way to the other side of the country.
Silence is golden they say, but not when you are alone, missing something that was everything to your life for three decades. Then, the call came in December. It was the Pats - Dave, what are you up to. Then, Mark & Mike at the Giants called.
The scouting bug bit. I decided that The NFL Draft Report (aka as The Poor Man's Guide to the NFL Draft) would not be published this year as my way of honoring Laurie. However, due to the teams calling, I've delved heavy into the talent, but not from the typical draft perspective, rather, from a pro potential standpoint.
Now the reason for this post is simple-Sy & I are trying to just tell you what we have heard, seen or know. Whether you agree or disagree, we try our hardest to give you, the Big Blue Family, an outlet into the other side of scouting.
As I started doing last year & will continue this year, I will try my hardest to give you what I have, provide reports as the Giants pick and fill you in on the street FAs I think will stick.
ALL I ASK-be cool. As some of you have seen, I don't answer stupid questions & I WILL NOT deal with nitpickers. If I spelled something wrong, so be it. You are not a spell check machine & neither am I. Just appreciate what Sy does because honestly, go look at other team sites. Does any of them have the fountain of info he has brought to you?
Yeah, I am posting again, but I am only in a support role - Sy is the gumba here. Just give the two of us some slack. We take criticism well, got thick skin, but put yourselfs in Sy's shoes & do what I am doing right now - giving him a standing ovation.

I think you also deserve a standing ovation  
Eli Wilson : 4/16/2017 1:28 pm : link
Beautifully written..Your expressing  
Big Blue '56 : 4/16/2017 1:30 pm : link
of what it was like and how you coped is and will be an ongoing inspiration..

Thanks for joining our family. You're most welcome and for more than just your expertise..
thomasa510 : 4/16/2017 1:30 pm : link
Hey. Enjoyed your post and others.

Would love to learn more about your past scouting. A couple of questions:

1) what major picks did you miss on in the past where you saw something in their game that never translated to the NFL (let's avoid unpredictable injuries)

2) what positions are the hardest to scout for?

Thanks again for these long interesting posts
Great post.  
allstarjim : 4/16/2017 1:34 pm : link
Dave, I love the draft, love analyzing prospects, and think what you do is actually fun, whereas I think a lot of people probably think that doing the kind of job you and Sy do is crazy. To be around the game and go all over the country finding diamonds in the rough... it's awesome. I love my job, gives me a pretty flexible schedule and I work from home quite a bit, but I often wonder what it must be like working with teams and being so close to the game for a living.

You both are well-deserving of a standing ovation. Your contributions here are invaluable. Thank you.
Dave Te  
imyrpc66 : 4/16/2017 1:38 pm : link
So sorry for your loss.

One thing caught my eye: "I've delved heavy into the talent, but not from the typical draft perspective, rather, from a pro potential standpoint".

I always thought that was the whole point of the draft-the pro potential of each possible draftee. Can you expand on what you're saying there? Thanks so much.
To Thomasa510  
nflscouting : 4/16/2017 1:43 pm : link
I actually don't miss on "draft picks" as most know me as an anti-draft analysts. Here's what I mean. I've been doing this since 1968, few crap gets past me. I am more impressed with the unknowns, underrated & under-developed types - they excel, a scout adds to his reputation. My best find? Brady - played for me when I selected for the East-West & Blue-Gray Games - knew he was a stud & convinced Big Tuna of that at the end of the draft after 16 other QBs were taken
nflscouting : 4/16/2017 1:45 pm : link
Offensive Line-it takes at least three years to see how the kid develops. More & more, you see a lack of dominence in college blockers & the OL coach has to completely re-do the footwork. The spread hurts, as most college OL guys are more nimble than strong & the NFL blockers are called upon mostly for a power game rather than zone blocking. Look at my previous post for how I grade OL guys & what I look for
Yep, like the majority have said,  
section125 : 4/16/2017 1:45 pm : link
we are lucky at BBI to have had Sy'56 and now Dave-Te. Draft day it is really neat to quick look up what Sy and Dave have written on the player drafted..
Big Blue '56 : 4/16/2017 1:51 pm : link
In comment 13430259 nflscouting said:
Offensive Line-it takes at least three years to see how the kid develops. More & more, you see a lack of dominence in college blockers & the OL coach has to completely re-do the footwork. The spread hurts, as most college OL guys are more nimble than strong & the NFL blockers are called upon mostly for a power game rather than zone blocking. Look at my previous post for how I grade OL guys & what I look for

A brief synopsis on Flowers coming out of college and your present thoughts moving forward? If you've discussed this in another thread, please point to it..Thanks
nflscouting : 4/16/2017 1:53 pm : link
For the last few years, I was "arm twisted" by sites publishing my scouting reports to add draft flair. Those that know what I do, I rate strictly on a three-year development plan - where I predict that athlete to be three years down the road.
To appease those media outlets, I had staff grade players based on draft round projections, while I provided a "Pro Grade" for each player. My staff could have a guy as a 5th rounder (example-WR Kenny Golladay), but I have him 8th at the WR spot. Will he be the 8th WR taken- doubtful, but three years from now, let's see where he stacks up with this class.

All I am trying to say in that sentence was, no draft grades were compiled by either me or staff this year. Did not need to, as I decided not to publish. Will that return when The NFL Draft Report kicks off the 2018 draft commencement beginning in June, yes.

I just will not be pigeon holes into ME ever rating a player based on where he will go in the draft. I leave that for staff, as my main source of income & input is with the teams, not the media.

I mean, classic case in point - look how much attention is placed by the media on the Combine. That's a week of looking at guys in their undies. I am not drafting a Full Monty team. Yes, John Ross clocked 4.22, but I bet if you ran him with equipment, he'd be quite a few ticks slower.
Give me a 4.5 guy that runs 4.52 with equipment over a 4.22 guy that does the same at 4.52
Dave, you're one of the reasons why BBI is the best message board on  
Anakim : 4/16/2017 1:55 pm : link
The net. You're simply invaluable to us and hope you can post more year round.
Sorry for your loss  
Mike B from JC : 4/16/2017 2:05 pm : link
Wish nothing but the best to you. You and sy, are very respected here. Thanks for all the draft info, on our giants. Hopefully they will do the right things, towards building a SB team again. A much better team but, still have needs at DT,olb, oline,TE and RB. Anyway thanks again
Dave Te  
Paulie Walnuts : 4/16/2017 3:05 pm : link
Thank you sir

and so sorry for your loss. could be any of us. you did your absolute best Al Davis would be proud of you

welcome and cant wait to read your stuff
Dave Te  
Jay in Toronto : 4/16/2017 3:10 pm : link
you and Sy add so much to our fandom lives.

Thank you.

Don't let the trolls and nit-pickers get you. For every one of those there are hundreds of quiet ones who so appreciate your effort and expertise.

Regarding your intro -- what did you think of Buxbaum?

RE: Dave Te  
Big Blue '56 : 4/16/2017 3:41 pm : link
In comment 13430300 Jay in Toronto said:
you and Sy add so much to our fandom lives.

Thank you.

Don't let the trolls and nit-pickers get you. For every one of those there are hundreds of quiet ones who so appreciate your effort and expertise.

Regarding your intro -- what did you think of Buxbaum?

Like I said...  
Giant John : 4/16/2017 3:54 pm : link
Thank you
BIG BLUE-My Brain Fart  
nflscouting : 4/16/2017 4:33 pm : link
Crap, Joel! My boy. We grew up on Ocean Parkway & I spent hours upon hours shooting the breeze with him as a kid. I tell ya, old age, but to me, he was what I regard my mentors, Al Davis, Bill Polian, Jim Finks - a hall of famer all the way. I miss him, dribble down the shirt and all. Funny you brought that up though. I think one of the reasons I am back on the road, outside of missing it so much, was the thought that without Laurie, I might end up being found weeks after death. Joel made the rest of us work harder - not to compete, just to compare thoughts. My biggest influence was by the guys that put me front & center with Al Davis back in 1968 - Jon Kingdon & Roy Schleicher. Al turned me over to Sid Gilman, so my teachers all had pretty good pedigree!
Joel went the media route, but after getting 20K in 1968 for my reports, I buttered my bread going forward dealing with the NFL scouting departments. To them, I'm regarded as Doctor Watson (heavy research), letting them wear the Sherlock Holmes houndstooth cap.
Like Joel, I don't force myself on them, but if I get conviction on a guy, oh boy (eli Apple example), I will let my clients in the league know my thoughts in spades.
THIS YEAR-I tell everyone needing secondary help - get Adams or Conley at all costs. Actually have Conley rated higher than Apple & all here know how much I was on Eli last year. That is why my Prince Charming/glass slipper talk is on two fits for Big Blue _ Lamp or Willis
I walked  
old man : 4/16/2017 5:19 pm : link
that same walk with the late wife,including the shutdown and years together, so I can both sympathize and empathize with you. It leaves you almost zombie like afterwards; DOING but with no purpose.
Those calls came just at the right time, so that you could DO but WITH purpose.
I know sometimes we BBIers give each other a ration of stuff because one guy's TREASURE player is another guy's TRASH player, even to getting so personal about it that one leaves BBI because of all the bull.
That all said I think all of BBI understands why you and Sy do what you do, it's because of love of the game, sharing how scouts and front offices look at players,so that ultimately even a 60 year fan of the Giants like me, can learn more about the bigger picture of the NFL these past 3 years than all the prior 57.
And with all that said, we here need to appreciate any and all the info we get and that we are so much more blessed than any other blog to have you both on our site.
Thank you Old Man  
nflscouting : 4/16/2017 6:12 pm : link
From one hurt soul to another, I relate to the pain, but determined to begin again. Funny how I got back to this forum - when the Giants called, their scouting dept secretary sent me a post somebody started on this site. Gave me goose bumps. This is the only forum I will be posting on through the draft as appreciation, as this is what Joe Cocker might say, a place to "get By With A Little Help From My Friends"
Thank you. Anytime I see you or Sy post I jump right on it. I may not  
Blue21 : 4/16/2017 6:51 pm : link
post on it but guarantee I read it.
Rjanyg : 4/16/2017 7:57 pm : link
Thanks for you insightful contributions and I appreciate Sy as well.

The draft is so much fun for me and you guys get me all geeked up.

Welcome back and I pray you have strength in life without your God given partner. Go bless!
gtt350 : 4/16/2017 8:01 pm : link
Reb8thVA : 4/16/2017 8:51 pm : link
Thank you for the insight into your life and all the trials and tribulations you have gone through. It's a good reminder to cherish those people that we love in our lives and not to take them for granted and that life can really kick your ass so we should be more kind and understanding of each other. Thanks for the scouting reports also.
Thanks Dave-Te  
ChathamMark : 4/16/2017 8:58 pm : link
Appreciate your wisdom on the draft and lessons on life.
Hey Dave  
mrvax : 4/16/2017 9:42 pm : link
I was born in 1960 and am still with my sweetheart since 1979. Married since '83. I am so thankful you are here. I feel so bad for your recent loss, but here, you are with an online family. Many on this site have met in person.

Hang in there, it will get better! Oh, and thanks a lot for the Oline/WR/RB/TE blocking explanation.
Great stuff Dave.  
Beezer : 4/16/2017 9:51 pm : link
Truly appreciate your efforts, as well as Sy's.

Also, very sorry about your wife's passing. My deepest condolences.
Dave, I am sorry for your loss and...  
EricJ : 4/16/2017 10:01 pm : link
thanks for the insights
Very open and honest  
Torrag : 4/16/2017 11:39 pm : link
Life can be a bitch. Hang in there.
You said does rather then do in the 2nd to the last paragraph.  
3r76jp : 4/17/2017 12:01 am : link
Kidding thanks for all that time and effort that you and Sy does for this site. My condolences to you and your family may you all find acceptance, appreciation and closure.
Hey Dave  
Marty866b : 4/17/2017 12:21 am : link
I go way back with you(don't know if you remember me?)and I used to sit at the draft all the time with Palmer Hughes. I was at every draft from 1971 until I moved to Florida in late 1993.At every draft I always made my way to speak with you and Joel Buchsbaum until Joel unfortunately passed away. I am so glad you have found this great website to post on. For the most part,there are really good guys here. Your posts about your wife are heartbreaking and I am certain that you are a marvelous husband,father,and grandfather. I hope this new found energy to delve back into the NFL draft brings you much needed comfort.
Dave and Sy  
SHO'NUFF : 4/17/2017 4:17 am : link
this has been one of the best Draft periods in recent memory thanks to your hard work...I'm sure we all appreciate your time, effort and sacrifice.
We are very fortunate  
GMen23 : 4/17/2017 8:07 am : link
To have you & Sy provide your experience, research, and evaluations. Thank you so much.

My prayers go out to you, as you continue to deal with the your loss of your life long partner.
I know  
Thegratefulhead : 4/17/2017 2:55 pm : link
Hello Dave,

So very sorry to hear about your loss. My mother went into the hospital because some veins in her neck burst. While in the hospital she contracted Pnuemonia. The doctors missed a collapsed lung because her doctor went on vacation and his associate not know her and told her Pnuemonia is painful. Pain was an old friend to my mother, she had a rare for of rhumatoid arhtrits that attacked her organs as well as her joints. I held her hand as she was taking the last breath she would ever take on her own. She had a do not resusitate order and did not want to be intibated. At the last moment she she requested to be saved. I was young at the the time and my father had worked hours like you....he folded and checked out and into drunkedness and left his 3 children to make all the hard decisions(they ultimately fell on me) I spent weeks in an intensive care waiting room learning things about life you cannot learn anywhere else. Watching someone you love go through multiple organ failure while being on a vent is....there is no word. I am real fucking proud of you for getting back in the game. Thank for doing this, thank you for choosing to be a father and real man in the face of so much personal pain. I see you, I think the family and friends that have you in their life are very fortunate. Stay strong. I know.
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