Health, Exercise, and Sports Sciences ETDs

Publication Date



Given the change in the business nature of the National Football League (NFL) in 1993, the player evaluation process has become increasingly important. The methods in this article were created to aid general managers and owners in the player acquisition process by providing them with an additional technique to evaluate talent in a sport where the talent evaluation process is an imprecise science. The purpose of the study was to identify the relationship between pre-career statistical collegiate variables and career longevity. The collegiate statistical data in this study consisted of 2,285 college football players who were drafted into the NFL in the 1994-95 season or later and ended their careers before or after the 2008-2009 season. The data consisted of 2,285 players from the positions of: quarterback, running back, fullback, wide receiver, tight end, offensive center, guard, tackle, defensive end, defensive tackle, linebacker, cornerback, safety, punter and kicker. The independent variables used in the study were the traditional collegiate statistics for the various positions in the study and the dependent variable was career longevity/number of years played in the NFL. The data analysis included the use of multiple regression tests to determine the relationship between the independent variables and the dependent variable. The multiple regression tests revealed that there was a relationship between pre-career statistical variables and career longevity for defensive ends, defensive tackles, linebackers, quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers and offensive linemen. However, there was no relationship among kickers, punters, tight ends, defensive backs or fullbacks.


NFL Combine, NFL Pro Days, Moneyball, Salary Cap, NFL Draft, Scouting, Player Evaluation, Player Development, Trades, Free Agency, College Football, Statistics, Analytics, Pre-Draft Visits, NCAA, NFL

Document Type




Degree Name

Physical Education, Sports and Exercise Science

Level of Degree


Department Name

Health, Exercise, and Sports Sciences

First Committee Member (Chair)

Barnes, John

Second Committee Member

Seidler, Todd

Third Committee Member

Clement, Annie

Fourth Committee Member

Schweitzer, John

Available for download on Monday, July 27, 2122