The NFL has not been able to scout the way the usually do and many scouts are scared to miss. With that being said, this year has been a train wreck for many, and it is making it hard for NFL scouts as well.
Many NFL scouts were not able to properly scout in 2021 due to COVID-19 protocols. Many college scouts were not allowed on campuses, meaning they could not look at the players and find out more information. So they are behind the eight ball.
There are talented players in the NFL Draft, but if you have not been able to do a thorough process of scouting it is easier to scout a veteran player because you have all the film you need. The pro scouts have been able to watch all the film and with this being said I would not be shocked if teams are more apt to send draft picks this year to land veterans as stop gaps rather than investing their future in a rookie they could not dig deep enough on.
I am not saying this is right, but this year why are so many veteran quarterbacks on the trade block? Think about it, there are players names getting floated out there we would have never believed were floated in trade rumors before. Why? Because the trade value is at an all-time high because some teams are not too confident in their scouting.
Medicals are key. NFL teams want to get medicals on players, and this year they will have to do something different to get the medical information needed on players. This could be a problem, for teams. You do not want to put all your eggs in a basket with a player you cannot do a thorough check on.
I know this sounds crazy, but you have to consider the time we are in. Only one of the three major all-star games played this year. The NFL scouting Combine is being re-arranged. Only a certain amount of scouts were allowed to watch games on players live this year at each school. Many schools did not allow scouts into their facilities. Scouts are limited to attend the pro days. Who knows how many players are going to actually attend a pro day. This year is a train wreck for the NFL as well as the players. So with that being said, maybe a veteran quarterback like Deshaun Watson, or a veteran WR like Odell Beckham Jr. is a safer bet than a player with tons of potential that you cannot get enough intel on.
We will see how it plays out, but I think you will see more trades than normal in 2021.