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Out West with Waugh: Draft Ready


Player Personnel Assistant Ethan Waugh is in his fourth season with the 49ers and has become a jack of all trades for General Manager Scot McCloughan with duties that cover both the pro and college side of scouting. In this latest blog, Waugh updates everyone on the final preparations for Saturday and Sunday's NFL Draft.

During this final week leading into the Draft we always reserve two days to meet with the offensive coaching staff, two days to meet with the defensive coaching staff and then a day with special teams.

We go through the board and compare notes on each player in terms of how the personnel department sees a player and how the coaching department sees a player. If there is a discrepancy we will bring out more tape to watch, go through the background and come to a consensus on where that player should be, which is very similar to what we did as a personnel department in the last two weeks prior to this one. I think Todd Brunner talked about that in his blog.

I think it is a really informative atmosphere. The coaches are passionate about the guys at their position and the scouts are passionate about the guys in their area and obviously it's more up to Scot McCloughan, the head coach and the coordinators to take into account the whole country and the whole roster and where guys will really fit. It's all very matter of fact and very congenial as we work through our differences, and definitely not a combative situation like some people might imagine.

McCloughan and Nolan will also go over trade scenarios and "what ifs." Most teams are very active this week in terms of contacting one another to see who is trying to move up and who is trying to move back, so I'm sure they've both fielded some phone calls and made some of their own as well. Essentially, it's important to formulate a plan of if and when we might be willing to make a trade and what the parameters might be.

We also spend some time talking with our head trainer about each player to make sure we are all on the same page medically. We'll review any prospects who could have restrictions and make certain we know the history of each guy in terms of injuries or potential for injury.

We have two sets of cards for the weekend for every player and at this point we've also set up our extra board. On one board we'll take the cards off of our draft board and place in order of 1 thru 252 so that we can see the final order. On the other board we will group the cards by each NFL team's draft selections.

At this point we've also called every prospect on our draft board, free agents included to make sure we have at least two, if not three contact numbers for them. We've confirmed who their agent is, where they are going to be so that if we do draft them we know where to fly them in from. We also ask if they've been injured or had any accidents since we last talked to them, and hopefully they are honest.

I've been here pretty much around the clock the last few days, just making sure that each card is updated with the correct information. I've also double checked the file on every player and made sure that it is all included. I've also been cleaning out the draft room down to the bones because there will be a lot of people in there over the weekend.

During the Draft, my assignment is basically keep track of our board and that we are exact on who is still available to be selected and make sure that I'm there to pull any information that McCloughan asks for right away. I also set up the schedule for the scouts to man the phone to New York. Additionally, I make sure Brunner has the right numbers to call when we make our pick since he is the one who usually gets the player on the phone for us.

At this point, the hay is in the barn. Everything is done, all of the players are watched and stacked where we think they should be and now it's just up to us to pick the right guy. I don't think there will be any panic. We are very prepared and it's just a matter of hoping that the right guys are there when we pick. It's like the day before a game, nothing is going to change. The game plan is in. You are just going to double check the details and be ready to roll.

I don't expect anything to go awry and I know that with the work we've put in, we should have a very solid NFL Draft!

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