Great players don’t always get drafted. Players mature late sometimes. Others don’t get the look they deserve because of ill-timed injuries or bad luck. Some don’t shine at a big-time college program, so they get overlooked in the draft. Occasionally one of those players–Kurt Warner, for example–achieves more than anybody imagined, soaring past all the players with bigger hype to succeed on a level beyond.
But it’s the era of big data and unprecedented info flow. NFL scouts process gigabytes of player information. So how could five receivers on the Seattle Seahawks go undrafted? FIVE of them. Jermaine Kearse, Bryan Walters, Ricardo Lockette, Chris Matthews and Doug Baldwin–not one of them got the call when their time came. They had to scratch and claw their way in. And they’re hungry. Baldwin led the Seattle receiving corp this season with 66 catches and 825 receiving yards. And they block. Man, do they block–for Marshawn Lynch and Russell Wilson. When you scratch and claw to get here, blocking isn’t unglamorous duty–it’s another wonderful part of the job description.