With the Super Bowl having been won earlier in February, attention has already turned towards the NFL Draft to see who could have the best shot at the big prize next season.
As part of the draft event, invited prospective players have interviews with teams and a comprehensive physical, medical and psychological testing program.
With a range of tests being undertaken at what is called the NFL Combine, it is clear that it is a very tough and demanding time for those who want to break into the NFL.
Physical measurements are taken such as height, weight, arm length, hand length, and fat percentage. There is also a 40-yard dash to measure speed and power, a bench press test, vertical jump test, broad jump test, a 20-yard shuttle, three-cone drill and a 60-yard shuttle.
As well as that, a number of skill-specific tests exist. Each player must go through multiple drills designed for their specific position. These are seen as less important than the fitness numbers, though.
For psychological testing, the prospects used to go through the Wonderlic Test which had 50 questions to test a player’s intelligence and problem solving.
Since 2013, they have also done an extra 60-minute test to offer a more robust and comprehensive view of what the player’s mental capacity is like. That has since replaced the Wonderlic Test.
There are also five medical tests that must be undertaken by the prospects. There is an injury evaluation to ensure there are no hidden issues. There is also a drug screen, a functional movement screen to provide extra detail on their mobility, a cybex test to test flexibility and joint movement, and finally a urine test.