FanPost

What to expect from a draft pick - Parcells

This is the continuation of the series of posts about how successful Dallas has been in the draft.  In the first post, I showed what you should expect from a draft pick.  Then showed how well Dallas has done since the start of the second dynasty.  That dynasty started with Jimmy Johnson and Jerry Jones taking over the team after 29 years of Landry and relatively stable ownership.

In this article, we will continue a series discussing 5 periods of the post Landry years broken down by the Head Coaches as markers.  These five periods are Johnson, the transition period between Johnson and Parcells, Parcells, Phillips, and Garrett as head coaches.  

This post will discuss the Parcells years.

We have drafted a number of players in that time, large enough sample to get a feel for the results.  Pro Football Reference provides the data.  I exported the draft history by draft round and pick, years played, number of pro-bowl and all pro honors.  I then categorized each draft pick using the categories described in the previous article.

TERRIBLE	career less than 3 years
BELOW AVERAGE	3-year players but not 3-year starters
AVERAGE		everybody else
ABOVE AVERAGE	1 or 2 pro-bowl or 1 all pro honor
GREAT		3 pro-bowl or multiple all-pro honors
  
Each draft pick will be categorized into seven groups according to the original article as follows

Group	picks		approximate range

1	1 to 13		top of the 1-st round	
2	14 to 40	rest of 1-st to the top of the 2-nd	
3	41 to 66	rest of the 2-nd
4	67 to 86	most of the 3-rd

5	87 to 149	rest of 3-rd to the  4-rd	
6	150 to 189	4-th and 5-th	
7	190 +		all other picks	

This was relatively quick and easy, but there are some caveats.  PFR provides data for the players time including on their time on other teams.  That is acceptable for this study as we are just looking at the ability to find and obtain the talent in the draft.  

A second caveat will understate Garrett’s time frame as some players may shift in category.  This will be slight as most have already locked in where they would even if they excel for the next year or two.  I could have stopped a year or two earlier to avoid that just as I did not analyze any of McCarthy’s years.  Yet I decided the small difference was less than getting the full years for each of the coaches.

Another caveat exists for the discussion of each coach.  As the numbers are much smaller, they are much more influenced by small changes. The percentages must be looked at considering the total number.  A shift of one or two players affects the percentages significantly.  This is shown by the following table by actual numbers not percentages. 


GROUP		TERR	BEL	AVE	ABO	GRE	TOT
.			AVE		AVE

1		0	0	0	1	1	2
2		1	0	2	0	0	3
3		1 	0	3	0	0	4
4		0	0	1	0	1	2

5		2	1	3	2	0	8
6		1	2	0	0	0	3
7		3	4	1 	0	1	9

Total		8	7	10	3	3	31

Some things stand out.  In the original post, I listed the Dallas results as a whole (D) and expected results (E) to give some background.  Here I will add each of the coaches as we go along for comparison, (J) is Johnson, (T) is for the transition years and (BP) for Parcells.

OVERALL

pick	TERR	BEL	AVE	ABO	GREAT	TOTAL
.			AVE		AVE
Group 1:  1-13
BP	0	0	0	50	50	100
T	0	0	0	50	50	100
J	0	0	33	33	33	100
D	0	0	20	30	50	100
E	10	16	30	23	21	100

Group 2:  14-40
BP	33	0	67	0	0	100	
T	0	20	60	0	20	100	
J	10	0	50	0	40	100
D	7	10	36	30	27	100
E	16	23	42	10	9	100

Group 3:  41-66
BP	25	0	75	0	0	100
T	27	27	27	0	19	100	
J	14	43	29	0	14	100	
D	17	35	31	7	10	100
E	22	34	32	9	3	100

Group 4:  67-86
BP	0	0	50	0	50	100
T	75	0	25	0	0	100
J	40	0	20	20	20	100
D	30	15	35	5	1	100
E	26	45	24	3	2	100

Group 5:  87-149
BP	25	13	37	25	0	100
T	46	33	21	0	0	100
J	53	20	7	0	7	100
D	36	41	18	4	1	100
E	39	42	15	3	1	100

Group 6:  150-189
BP	33	67	0	0	0	100
T	50	30	20	0	0	100
J	25	25	25	25	0	100
D	44	28	19	9	0	100
E	53	36	8	2	1	100

Group 7:  190 +
BP	33	45	11	0	11	100
T	56	33	11	0	0	100
J	76	15	9	0	5	100
D	55	35	8	0	2	100
E	61	31	6	1	1	100

EXPECTED VALUE

I calculated the actual value of each draft pick group using the same methodology as the expected value.  The actual value is a weighted average of the picks for each group.  We can compare the actual value to the expected value.

Group		Dall	John	Tran	Par
	Exp	Act 	Act	Act	Act
.	Val	Val	Val	Val	Val

1	3.28	4.30	4.00	4.50	4.50		
2	2.72	3.50	3.60	2.60	2.33	
3	2.39	2.59	2.57	2.55	2.50		
4	2.12	2.60	2.80	1.50	4.00

5	1.85	1.95	1.73	1.75	2.63		
6	1.62	1.94	2.50	1.70	2.00
7	1.50	1.53	1.58	1.44	2.11		

The difference in actual value vs expected value is a point estimate of the difference of the entire line.  This shows the differences in one easy to see number as opposed to the full line. 

SPECIFIC PLAYERS

We can also drill down from the overall numbers to see specific players.  I will discuss the great and above average players.  Then discuss the disappointments.

Great

Year	pick	AP	PB	ST	Name

’05	1-11	4	9	11	DeMarcus Ware
’03	3-69	2	11	16	Jason Witten
’05	7-224	1	4	7	Jay Ratliff

Above average

’03	1-5	0	2	15	Terrence Newman
’06	3-92	0	1	5	Jason Hatcher
’05	4-109	0	1	3	Marion Barber III

We still got some great and above average players.  Bill got some spectacular players in his few years here.  Ware is in the HOF and Witten is just waiting for his first call.

DISAPPOINTMENTS

Given the low probabilities of success, I will only mention those who were drafted in the first four categories.  These are basically first to mid third round picks.

Below Average

Year	Pick	AP	PB	ST	Name

none

Terrible

’06	1-18	0	0	0	Bobby Carpenter
’04	2-52	0	0	0	Jacob Rogers

BACKGROUND DISCUSSION

The years with Parcells are noted for several things.  He picked a few spectacular players and few but notable busts.  Ware and Witten are among the best at their positions ever.  

Yet Bill is not known for a great evaluator of talent. He is famous for wanted to draft Spears before Ware.  Jerry and the front office thought otherwise and the rest is history.

Instead, he is known for getting the most out of the talent he had.  This is best seen in the middle and late rounds. Look at the expected value he got out of the last four categories.  He got much more out of those players than expected.  Again, not great, just a few more years playing and starting.  He increased the quality of the depth of the team.

Yet we can overstate this effect.  Among the players who started for a year was the great Rob Petiti at right tackle.  Here we see how drafting and starting can come into play.  He started for a year as somebody had to, but only one year.  This indicates that it was not the talent, but the need.  

A good indicator of talent is starting for three years.  Here we see such names as Brady James and Chris Canty in the fourth rounds, Pat Watkins in the fifth round and Patrick Crayton in the seventh round. Steven Peterman drafted in the third round started six years in the NFL.  Jacque Reeves started two years as a seventh rounder.

Bill changed the culture of the team and got the team back to fiscal sanity. Bill is well known for a 3/4 defensive schemes and Dallas has historically used a 4/3.  Jerry allowed the change to get Bill and because it was cheaper at the time and money was tight after the lean years.

Bill is also known for not putting up with BS.  Derek Ross was drafted in the third round started in 2002 but was gone the next year with Bill.  At the time, many folks were upset to lose such talent.  Ross was a flash in the pan, who did not work hard enough.

If you were not part of the long-term solution, you were gone.  As such, the marginal players who stayed were tough and worked hard.  This meant that the depth of the team pushed the starters, even if they themselves did not start.  

Larry Allen does not need any discussion on his greatness or his strength.  Yet he had a dispute with Bill on his offseason workouts.  Bill wanted him to focus more on stretching and being limber instead of strength to prolong his career.  Larry disagreed and left.

Emmitt Smith is another HOF player who left.  Bill wanted a new locker room culture.  Instead of entitled but talented players, Bill brought in folks like Dan Campbell.  Dan understood what Bill wanted and could explain it to other players.

During the transition years, the good times stopped and we went into cap hell.  With Bill, we stopped the losing streak.  Instead, the team went to the playoffs.

Bill recreated the team.  His teams were noted by quality and discipline.  So much so that even when Garrett took over the team after Phillips, that folks were talking about the talent on the team.




Another user-created commentary provided by a BTB reader.