Everyone wants to talk to the draft guys before the draft. Who is my favorite/local team going to pick? Where will Tebow get drafted? I couldn’t care less about talking with someone like NFLN’s Mike Mayock about that kind of stuff because EVERYONE is talking with him about that kind of stuff.

No, I’m more fascinated with talking about the process after the process is over. So how did this year’s draft go for him, the teams, and the league?

We talk about when the draft evaluation process begins and how long it is for everyone involved. We also discuss the differences between a big board and a mock draft. Turns out, Mayock only does one mock draft a year…the day the draft starts. But his information does come from a balance of scouting reports, talking with teams and his own assessment of tape and workouts. And man alive does he watch a lot of tape and go to a lot of workouts.

He explains that he looks at his job like he’s a scout/GM for a team, but on top of that, he’s trying to look at every team and, during the draft, fit players he thinks will be good for their specific system. In essence, he’s playing GM for all 32 teams, PLUS his own evaluations. That’s a lot of work.

I ask about NFLN and the amount of interviews he did in advance of the draft. Does he feel like he has to be a pitchman for the network now that they’ve been doing the draft for a few years? Ultimately, the goal is to get more people watching, right? Well, not to Mayock. He makes it perfectly clear that his job is to evaluate football talent and not worry about TV. He’s a football guy, who happens to ply his trade on television. He’s rather specific about that.

What about Mel? Doesn’t he have a rivalry with Mel? It would make the rest of us so much happier if he had a rivalry…nah, hatred…with Mel. Get ready to be disappointed.

Football guy or not, he is on TV, and wasn’t able to do the third day of the draft — his bread and butter — because his voice didn’t hold up. We talk about how disappointing that was for him.

We discuss how specific they get with doing research on these players. I use the line Mayock said during day one: “if I had to pick nits, he’s a little stiff in the hips.” Which was, clearly, the line of the draft. But it illustrates just how specific teams can get. Is that good? Do they – and he – lose sight of the bigger picture of playing football?

And what’s with his fascination with arm length? He actually gives a really good answer to this one.

We discuss the concept of value and how the NFL seems more enamored with draft picks than actual players. Why do teams value potential more than production?

And we talk family, as his daughter was a prolific tweeter during the draft. She’s looking to get into this business, and using social media is a smart way. Of course that made Mayock feel like a dinosaur.

Tags: Draft, MIke Mayock, , NFLN