NFL Teams Losing for a Better Draft Pick is OK
Here why, in my opinion, it is perfectly legitimate for an NFL team to lose in order to receive a higher draft pick.
There has been a lot of talk in the NFL about teams purposely losing games in order to gain the top draft pick and receive the best overall prospect, in this case of 2011, that top guy is Andrew Luck.
Luck has been lighting it up in Stanford leading his team to a BCS win last season and so far to a perfect record. Many experts and scouts feel that he has the skill set and more importantly, the smarts and the instinct to lead an NFL team deep into the playoffs and to a Super Bowl title. Because of this, many teams feel as if they can give up on a single season in order to get the draft pick necessary to obtain Andrew Luck
The teams involve are surely looking for that franchise, long-term quarterback to solidify their organization for the next decade. So far the Miami Dolphins, the Indianapolis Colts, the St. Louis Rams, the Minnesota Vikings, and the Arizona Cardinals are the early leaders, with the Dolphins and Colts win-less.
Now the Colts’ owner has already expressed his interest and amazement in Andrew Luck publically, and with Peyton Manning signed through 2015 but having some serious injuries, you wonder if the Colts are willing to trade their star QB in order to go younger and to push the reset button at QB.
The Dolphins have a vacancy at QB unless if someone out there actually considers Chad Henne a starting QB. Clearly the Dolphins could use Luck. The Rams do have a young starting QB in Bradford, but you wonder if they would also be willing to deal him or trade down in order to gain more draft picks.
But here is my take on the overall situation. It is PERFECTLY acceptable from a business perspective to move past one season in order to gain a better draft pick and set yourself for success in the next decade of football in the NFL. Many teams fall short of expectations for a season. Losing one season really isn’t that big of a deal. It’s always widely known in the business world to take a short-term loss for a long-term gain. Well this is a PERFECT example of taking a short-term loss for a long-term gain. Yes you “play to win the game”, but you also have to set yourself up for success.
Why over-achieve with a team when you know you will have to address the same problems year after year? I understand all of this sounds very wrong, but if you take a step back, and think about it from a general manager’s shoes, you’ll see that passing on succeeding in one season when you can set yourself up for many seasons and even up to a decade or more of winning seasons is something many teams would take in a heartbeat!