Redskins general manager Scot McCloughan this week is participating in his first-ever NFL Combine with the Redskins. On Thursday, he spoke with Redskins.com TV's Larry Michael about his approach to the combine and draft from the Redskins' suite at Lucas Oil Stadium.
On attending the Combine:
"I'm very excited. Each combine brings on so many dimensions, a lot of young talent players who are passionate about the game. It's good to see the interview process, good to get the medical grades back and also see them out here on the field. I look forward to it each year because it's a new batch of guys."
On what he focuses on:
"Well, it's another step along the way. We still have some processes to go through. But in my personal opinion, the two most important things about being here is first the medical grades, especially with underclassmen who we have nothing on right now from schools. Then, the interview process – especially for the coaches. It's the first
time they get to talk to these guys face-to-face. The area scouts, myself and Scott Campbell, the personnel director, we've had to build on some of these guys who have their All-Star games. But for the coaches, it starts a portfolio you keep adding to and adding to. And out here at theses shirt and shorts stuff, it's important to verify what you see on tape – quickness, speed, athletic ability. But, you don't play games in a t-shirt and shorts so you take it for what it's worth."
On changes he's made since being hired:
"Well, I haven't changed a lot because the structure is kind of in place already for the format of who's coming here, what're his responsibilities are why they're here. What I'm trying to change is our kind of way that we're not looking for the height, weight or speed guys, we're looking for football players. We want guys who are consistent, guys who are passionate, very competitive, tough and smart. It's not always the best athletes that way, but I want them to realize, just because a guy can't run a 4.4 40-yard [dash], doesn't mean he can't play wide receiver or running back. All the sudden you have an offensive lineman who measures 6'2 1/2" when the league average is 6'4", I could care less about that. Let me know about a football player and we'll go from there because that's what's going to help me on Sundays."
On finding the intangibles in a player:
"Well again, that's the process we're going through right now from the interview standpoint. I like to interview guys 2-3-4 times and see if they're consistent – you know how they come across with their body language, the
Take a look at some photos from Scot McCloughan's first day as general manager of the Washington Redskins.
way they answer the question, the passion they have for certain questions I ask. But, it's also for the coaches to be involved, and there's a tape interview every team gets about every player here. But again, it starts the process. It's a long one, but the more we can know about a guy – his personality and how he's wired inside (his heart, his mind, about the game..) – the better chance we have to hot on our picks."
On Redskins outside linebacker Ryan Kerrigan:
"From the standpoint of a football player, that's what we're looking for. I really liked him coming out of college, coming out of Purdue. Just know I got a consistent guy that know every day, he'll give his best. There're certain levels of talent. He's definitely extreme talent , but guys like him even if they have lesser talent but are consistent like him, you can win with those guys."
On returning to Redskins Park after the Combine:
"Well, we'll get back right away ... and schedule for the Pro Days coming up. All schools have the pro days for workouts. I'll nail down the ones I need to go to and see again and possibly the players I can meet again face-to-face. Then, the area scouts will cover their areas and we'll make sure we get to the workouts to the players we really like a whole lot, who are not here. Because, we need to see them in person. Then, we get a list of the 30 guys we can bring in. Again, that's for the coaches and the scouts to talk to but also for small medical stuff if need be. It goes by fast. It seems like a ways away but it goes by fast. I love this time of year."
On defining the draft:
"The thing is, I've always been around the way I like it, when it comes Draft Day, there's not chaos. Your board's set, you feel comfortable with it, you sit down. There might be times where there're trades when you get a little bit anxious but we'll be ready for that stuff. But, it's closure, closure to a long process. I'm very excited to add players to this team, draftable guys, college free agents that are going to come in and make this team stronger and stronger."