EXOS: The ‘SAT Prep’ of the NFL Scouting Combine

Arkansas tight end Hunter Henry runs a drill at the NFL football scouting combine on Saturday, Feb. 27, 2016, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)
Arkansas tight end Hunter Henry runs a drill at the NFL football scouting combine on Saturday, Feb. 27, 2016, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

EXOS Vice President of Pro/Elite Sports Adam Farrand joined the latest episode of Chargers Weekly – the official podcast of the team – to discuss how his company prepares prospects for the NFL Scouting Combine.

According to its website, EXOS is a “human performance company” that has trained 838 drafted players and 165 first-round draft picks. Past clients include Chargers running back Melvin Gordon, tight end Hunter Henry and wide receiver Mike Williams. Highlights from the conversation are below.

The importance of the next few weeks leading up to the combine (2:35):

“This is our Super Bowl. This is what, as a company, that we really look forward to – the combine. It’s really from a training perspective the one time of the year where our staff really can measure results on a national stage. As we work with a lot of athletes during the offseason, the improvement in their speed and in their strength, we see that on the field, but this is a time where our training is directly correlated to the results that they’ll have at the combine. So, it’s exciting. We’re really excited about the opportunity for a lot of these guys to go and showcase their athleticism in Indianapolis in front of these teams.”

On preparing athletes for the mental grind of the week in Indy, including interviews with teams (10:05):

“I think what we really harped with our guys is everything from when their season ended till when they’re drafted is a part of the interview process. Everybody that they speak to with the teams – the teams are, at this point, ... they’re doing some investigation into the prospects that they like, getting into the backgrounds of guys that have had some miscellaneous things in their past. They’re doing a lot of research right now so when they go to the combine they can ask these guys about those stories. So, we try to look at in a couple of different ways. From a football standpoint, we bring in former NFL coaches and former NFL players to work with the athletes; to help them to understand what sort of questions they’re going to get; to help them understand how to best communicate what they do within their scheme. Because what we’ve found is that a lot of guys really understand what they do, but the practice of being asked about it or being able to draw it on a white board is just something they haven’t done in a while. So, it’s just getting them (refamiliarized) with that. … I look at EXOS as sort of like the SAT prep to when you go and take the SAT.”

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