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The Draft Value Index: Drafting by the numbers

This is something I started working on during the offseason, but was never compelled to finish it. But now, with our list of needs in next years draft getting longer by the minute, it seems like a valuable tool that we could use. With Thomas Davis and Jeff Otah's future both very uncertain, we have positions that went very quickly from strengths to weaknesses that we might need to address in the draft. But what is our MOST necessary area of need? I have developed a simple system to decide.

I will warn you all that it is a bit subjective, as just about everyone will have a different opinion of the quality of a player we have, and even more so about the quality of player available in the draft. This system is designed to be a general guide of where we should look in a balance of need vs. BPA.

Have a look at the system... After the jump.

As alluded to a moment ago, the draft is all about balancing need versus best player available. This Draft Value Index system (DVI) will attempt to balance need against what is available, and answer when it is appropriate to postpone immediate success for the good of the team, or when you should look to the present rather than the future.

The system provides a point value to the situation of a team at a position from 10 to 1. 10 being the MOST dire and 1 being no worries. It then goes on to provide a point value to a draftable player from 10 to 1, 10 being the best in the draft and 1 being unproven questionable talent.

To compute the DVI of a position, you simply add the two numbers together.

Let me go ahead and show you the metrics...

Draft Value Index (DVI)

Team Situation at position (TS)

10 - No viable or serviceable starter and no legitimate or serviceable future starter
9 – No viable or serviceable starter and serviceable future starter
8 – Serviceable starter with injury/time issues and no legitimate or servicable future starter
7 – Viable starter with injury/time issues and no legitimate or servicable future starter
6 – Serviceable starter with injury/time issues and no legitimate future starter, but servicable future starter exists
5 – Viable starter with injury/time issues and future viable starter exists
4 – Serviceable starter with no legitimate future starter
3 – Serviceable starter with legitimate future starter
2 -  Viable starter with serviceable depth
1 – Viable starter with legitimate depth

 

Projected Player Quality (PQ)


10 – Once in a generation player, immediate viable starter, future HOF’er
9 – Special talent, proven college track record, immediate viable starter, future Pro Bowler
8 – Above Average talent, proven college track record, immediate viable starter
7 – Special talent, unproven college track record, immediate serviceable starter, future viable starter
6 – Above Average talent, unproven college track record, immediate serviceable starter, future viable starter
5 – Average talent, proven college track record, immediate and future serviceable starter
4 – Average talent, unproven college track record, future serviceable starter
3 – Developmental talent, proven college track record at position, future viable starter
2 – Developmental talent, proven college track record at other position, future viable starter
1 – Developmental talent, unproven college track record, future serviceable starter

A couple of key terms:

Viable starter- Someone you are fully comfortable carrying the load at a position
Serviceable starter – Someone you are comfortable carrying the load until better talent can be acquired

Now, let's apply the system to the Panthers by looking at our team situation at a position.

QB - We have Cam Newton, Derek Anderson, and Jimmy Clausen/Armanti Edwards. Cam Newton has already proven himself a viable starter, and Derek Anderson is a serviceable backup. Jimmy has proven unserviceable, and Armanti is unproven. Our TS at the quarterback position is therefore 2 - Viable starter, serviceable depth

RB - DeAngelo Williams, Jonathan Stewart, and Mike Goodson. Clearly two viable starters, and a servicable starter. This gives us the best possible rating, 1 - Viable starter, viable depth

WR - It gets interesting here. Steve Smith, Legedu Naanee, Brandon LaFell, Armanti Edwards, Kealoha Pilares, David Gettis on IR. Steve Smith is a viable stater, but is approaching the end of his playing life. Depending on your opinion of the guys behind him, we currently don't have a legitimate #1 WR behind him, but we do have plenty of guys who seem at minimum of being #2s. That makes WR a 6

I think you guys get the picture, so from now on I will just list the positions with the greatest need.

WR - 6, OT - 7, G - 4, DT - 9, OLB - 7,

Now to apply these findings a little...

DT is our greatest need. We should draft DT if a player of quality 10-8 exists when we pick, for comparison, Ndamukong Suh has a PQ of 10, we have a TS of 9, that gives Suh a DVI of 19. The reason that we go DT, is that the next greatest need we have is OLB which we should only consider drafting if a player has a DVI of 17 and no DT is higher than 16. If there is a tie, as say the best DT is a 17 and the best linebacker is a 17, the tiebreaker is organization philosophy, which for Carolina is BPA over Need. Therefore, we draft the "Once in a generation linebacker" first over the "Special but unproven talent" at DT.

I hope this makes a modicum of sense, I'll be working to make it more understandable over time.

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