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New Combine test will measure “wide range of competencies”


More details are emerging from NFL Network regarding the new testing procedure that will be used at the Scouting Combine this week, along with the time-honored (and outdated) Wonderlic.

According to the NFL’s internal memo, the new test “measures a wide range of competencies, including learning styles, motivation, decision-making skills, responding to pressure or unexpected stimuli, and core intellect.”

There are still no details about how the test will specifically work or the kinds of questions it will feature. Which means that, for at least this year, the test will yield the most accurate results. What those results mean is a different issue.

The memo also stresses that the new test was developed by a professor of industrial/organizational psychology, with input from current and former personnel executives including Thomas Dimitroff, John Elway, Jerry Reese, and Ernie Accorsi.
“This is an exciting innovation that brings updated best practices from corporate America to the NFL football operations,” the memo states, making us wonder who in the world would find a test that doesn’t involve unique consequences for incorrect answers exciting. “By giving clubs new and more relevant information, it offers additional information to supplement your decision-making in the draft. One of the most interesting aspects is that new information on player learning styles can potentially help our coaches’ work more effectively with young players.”

If it’s better than the Wonderlic, it’s an improvement. Of course, that’s a low bar; the only defense anyone has offered to explain the ongoing use of the Wonderlic test at the Combine is the fact that the Wonderlic test has been used for decades.