Posted: 10:49 am Wednesday, March 2nd, 2011

Forget the 40, bench press or vertical jump; Wonderlic test scores get most attention at NFL Combine 

By Post Staff

When former University of Florida offensive lineman Carl Johnson had to decide where he would train for the pre-NFL Draft process, he chose IMG Academy in Bradenton because it would prepare him in many different facets.

“You name it, they got it,” he said last week at the NFL Combine. “Cardio, speed training, lifting, position drills, mental conditioning, vision training, Wonderlic training.”

Say that last one again? Wonderlic training?

“It’s like studying for the SATs,” Johnson said.

In fact, the Wonderlic is probably more important for the draft prospects than the SATs were for their college entrance process. Their measureables in the 40-yard dash, bench press and vertical jump receive most of the attention at the Combine, but nothing creates a bigger buzz than the Wonderlic scores, which can be an indicator of not only a player’s ability to think and process information quickly, but his maturity level and preparedness for life as an adult in the NFL.

Last year, the Post got its hands on the Wonderlic scores for the top four quarterback prospects in the draft – Sam Bradford, Jimmy Clausen, Colt McCoy and Tim Tebow. Not only did the subsequent articles smash records for web clicks and give ESPN’s SportsCenter three straight days of material, but the article popped up again this week and is currently the No.4-most read article on palmbeachpost.com despite being a year old.

The Wonderlic is a 50-question test that must be completed in 12 minutes and supposedly tests a person’s cognitive learning and problem-solving abilities. Created in the 1930s by Eldon Wonderlic, the test has been part of the NFL Draft process since the late 1960s, though the daughter of the test’s creator told the Kansas City Star last week that the test is archaic and widely misused by the NFL. (Take some sample questions by clicking here.)

A Wonderlic score is only a small part of a player’s draft profile, and is no real indicator of success in the NFL — Matt Leinart’s career hasn’t panned out despite scoring a 35, while Dan Marino seemed to do OK despite his score of 15. But a top score, like the 40 posted by former No.1 pick Alex Smith, can boost a player’s draft stock, while a low score, like the 6 Vince Young reportedly scored on his first attempt, can give teams a reason to pause.

Johnson said the key to studying for the Wonderlic is to not get caught up on any questions.

“Focus on your strong points, leave the weak points until the end, look through the test, see what you’re good at, answer everything you know,” he said. “We train to answer one question every 23 seconds. That way at the 9 minute mark you should have 35-40 answers, so you got three minutes to either go over the ones you answered or just keep going.”

The Wonderlic scores are never officially released to the media but often get leaked by opportunistic scouts and agents looking to pump up one player or create negative attention for another.

Wonderlic scores don’t usually start trickling out to the public until a couple weeks after the Combine, but Alabama quarterback Greg McElroy’s camp has already leaked the good news to the public. Both the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram and Birmingham News have reported that McElroy scored a 48 on the test last weekend, which ties him with Ryan Fitzpatrick for the top score in the league among starting quarterbacks.

Former punter Pat McInally, like Fitzpatrick a Harvard graduate, is the only player in NFL history with a confirmed score of 50. Former offensive lineman Mike Mamula reportedly scored a 49.

The Wonderlinc is most important for positions that require a lot of quick thinking — namely, quarterback and offensive line. Here, then, are the Wonderlic scores for last year’s starting quarterbacks, and how they fared in 2010. A high score does not necessarily lead to NFL success, though many of the top passers do score well (note: Matt Cassel does not have a Wonderlic score because he did not attend the NFL Combine):

1. Ryan Fitzpatrick, Buffalo (48): Claimed starting job in Week 4 and finished with respectable 23 TD, 15 INT and 81.8 rating.

2. Alex Smith, San Francisco (40): Lost and reclaimed starting job, finished with 14 TD and 10 INT, but likely won’t return to San Fran.

3. Eli Manning, New York Giants (39): 2007 Super Bowl winner threw 31 TD, 25 INT last year as team missed playoffs.

4. Matt Stafford, Detroit (38): Injured in the third game of the season.

5. Tony Romo, Dallas (37): Threw 11 TD and 7 INT before being injured in sixth game of season.

6. Sam Bradford, St. Louis (36): Named AP Offensive Rookie of the Year after throwing 18 TD, 15 INT and leading Rams to 6-game improvement.

7. Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay (35): Won Super Bowl and had an MVP-type season with 101.2 passer rating.

7. Matt Leinart, Arizona (35): Cut after training camp and signed with Houston as a backup.

9. Tom Brady, New England (33): Three-time Super Bowl winner was named 2010 MVP and led Patriots to a 14-2 record

10. Matt Ryan, Atlanta (32): Led Falcons to a division title for the second time in his three years.

11. Matt Schaub, Houston, (31): Cemented himself as one of the game’s top passers with 4,320 yards, 24 TD, 12 INT.

12. Philip Rivers, San Diego (30): Threw for a career high 4,710 yards with 30 TD and 13 INT.

13. Matt Hasselbeck, Seattle (29): Posted a 73.2 rating, his lowest for a full season since 2001.

14. Mark Sanchez, New York Jets (28): Threw 17 TD, 13 INT and led Jets to AFC Championship Game.

14. Peyton Manning, Indianapolis (28): Threw for career high 4,700 yards with 33 TD and 17 INT.

14. Drew Brees, New Orleans (28): 2010 Super Bowl winner threw for 4,620 yards with 33 TD and 22 INT.

17. Josh Freeman, Tampa Bay (27): Threw 25 TD against just 6 INT and led several last-minute comebacks.

17. Joe Flacco, Baltimore (27): Posted career-bests across the board: 3,622 yards, 25 TD, 10 INT, 93.6 rating.

19. Carson Palmer, Cincinnati (26): Threw a career-high 20 INT as Bengals won just four games.

19. Jay Cutler, Chicago (26): Threw 23 TD against 16 INT and led Bears to a division title and NFC Championship Game.

21. Colt McCoy, Cleveland (25): Started eight games as a rookie with 6 TD and 9 INT and won the job for 2011.

21. Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh (25): Threw 17 TD and 5 INT in 12 games and led team to 9-3 record and a spot in the Super Bowl.

23. Jason Campbell, Oakland (23): Threw 13 TD and 8 INT in 12 startrs, but was benched multiple times and may be on the way out.

23. Jimmy Clausen, Carolina (23): Started 10 games as a rookie with 3 TD and 9 INT and has Carolina thinking about Cam Newton with the No. 1 pick.

25. Brett Favre, Minnesota (22): Had worst season of his Hall of Fame career, finishing with 11 TD, 19 INT and a 69.9 rating.

25. Tim Tebow, Denver (22): Started team’s final three games and threw for 300 yards in his second start, but will have to fight for the job next year.

25. Chad Henne, Miami (22): Threw 15 touchdowns and 19 interceptions, was benched twice and booed by the home fans.

28: Michael Vick, Philadelphia (20): Returned from exile to throw for 21 TDs against 6 INTs, rush for 9 TDs and lead Philly to a division title.

29. Vince Young, Tennessee (15): Threw 10 TDs against 3 INTs in eight starts, but clashes with coaches and management will lead to Titans cutting or trading him this offseason.

30. Donovan McNabb, Washington (14): Borderline Hall of Fame candidate ost his job after throwing 14 TDs, 15 INTs in 13 starts.

30. David Garrard, Jacksonville (14): Set a career high with 23 TD passes while leading Jags to a surprising 8-8 record.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] NEW ORLEANS — As we sit in the lobby in the Roosevelt Hotel waiting for the annual NFL Owners’ Meetings to begin, now seems like a good time to discuss the one area of the NFL Draft process that fans really go crazy about: [...]

  2. [...] NEW ORLEANS — As we sit in the lobby in the Roosevelt Hotel waiting for the annual NFL Owners’ Meetings to begin, now seems like a good time to discuss the one area of the NFL Draft process that fans really go crazy about: [...]

  3. Producer Edward Bass…

    Forget the 40, bench press or vertical jump; Wonderlic test scores get most attention at NFL Combine | The Daily Dolphin…

  4. autolocksmith…

    [...]Forget the 40, bench press or vertical jump; Wonderlic test scores get most attention at NFL Combine | The Daily Dolphin[...]…

  5. Portable tankless water heaters…

    [...]Forget the 40, bench press or vertical jump; Wonderlic test scores get most attention at NFL Combine | The Daily Dolphin[...]…

  6. Mother of the Groom Wedding Speech,Mother of Groom Speech…

    [...]Forget the 40, bench press or vertical jump; Wonderlic test scores get most attention at NFL Combine | The Daily Dolphin[...]…

  7. smith magenis syndrome…

    [...]Forget the 40, bench press or vertical jump; Wonderlic test scores get most attention at NFL Combine | The Daily Dolphin[...]…

  8. quan tri web says:

    quan tri web…

    [...]Forget the 40, bench press or vertical jump; Wonderlic test scores get most attention at NFL Combine | The Daily Dolphin[...]…

  9. HDR-CX160 Black Friday…

    [...]Forget the 40, bench press or vertical jump; Wonderlic test scores get most attention at NFL Combine | The Daily Dolphin[...]…

  10. roofing kansas city…

    [...]Forget the 40, bench press or vertical jump; Wonderlic test scores get most attention at NFL Combine | The Daily Dolphin[...]…

  11. 最新上映电影电视剧…

    [...]Forget the 40, bench press or vertical jump; Wonderlic test scores get most attention at NFL Combine | The Daily Dolphin[...]…

  12. marketplace says:

    marketplace…

    [...]Forget the 40, bench press or vertical jump; Wonderlic test scores get most attention at NFL Combine | The Daily Dolphin[...]…

  13. Asbestos,Mesothelioma, Asbestos Mesothelioma…

    [...]Forget the 40, bench press or vertical jump; Wonderlic test scores get most attention at NFL Combine | The Daily Dolphin[...]…

  14. euros pounds exchange rate…

    [...]Forget the 40, bench press or vertical jump; Wonderlic test scores get most attention at NFL Combine | The Daily Dolphin[...]…

  15. fico score says:

    fico score…

    [...]Forget the 40, bench press or vertical jump; Wonderlic test scores get most attention at NFL Combine | The Daily Dolphin[...]…

  16. Cheap Car Insurance Georgia…

    [...]Forget the 40, bench press or vertical jump; Wonderlic test scores get most attention at NFL Combine | The Daily Dolphin[...]…