Many pundits have Western Michigan Safety Louis Delmas on the Atlanta Falcons’ short list of possible draft picks at the #24 spot in the 1st round of next month’s NFL draft. Well, the scores are back from the famed Wonderlic test given at the NFL combine. Delmas scored a 12.
While a score doesn’t directly relate to success or failure on the NFL field, there are general trends to a player’s performance on the test. Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick (Ivy leaguer) has the highest score to day and has had limited success in the NFL to date. You can make an argument about Vince Young’s famous score of 6 meant something as he has failed to adapt to the NFL and the offensive complexity of his position after his rookie campaign. The consensus is that decision-making positions, mainly quarterback, middle linebacker, safety, you want generally higher scores – or at least above a certain threshold. That threshold is usually around 17-18.
Now, a player with a low score won’t necessarily drop in the draft, it will just make you look at the tapes more to see their football awareness on the field. Delmas is considered a top-notch athlete with all the physical tools to become a great safety. Does a low Wonderlic have any impact on his draft status? Probably not. Safety is thin at the top of the draft in 2009 and some teams won’t wait until the bigger class (at least projected) of 2010 comes around next April.