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Checkmate Scaling Blog/ Navigating the All-Star Landscape: A Guide for Emerging NFL Agents

Navigating the All-Star Landscape: A Guide for Emerging NFL Agents

Thursday, January 11, 2024

When it comes to the pre-draft process, January is a critical month marked by the occurrence of various all-star games. The participation of your client in one of these games, especially those well-attended by NFL scouts, can significantly impact their chances of getting drafted or signing with an NFL team.

While elite prospects who become Days 1 and 2 draftees often skip all-star play, for a rising young agent like yourself, the Hula Bowl (Orlando), College Gridiron Showcase (Fort Worth), and Tropical Bowl (Orlando) are three key events to consider.

Established games like the Senior Bowl and Shrine Bowl feature the most elite prospects. However, the Hula Bowl, College Gridiron Showcase, and Tropical Bowl have gained prominence, offering your client exposure and valuable experience.

It's crucial to note that games without a significant NFL scout presence are risky, regardless of claims about sharing film with NFL teams. In-person attendance by league representatives holds paramount importance in determining the games' credibility.

Let's delve into the specifics of each game:

Hula Bowl

  • ​Duration: One week

  • Location: Orlando, FL (since 2021)
  • All expenses covered by the game (travel, hotel, food)
  • ​Executive Director: Damond Talbot, known for innovation in NIL/marketing
  • Received solid NFL scout support in 2022

College Gridiron Showcase (CGS)

  • ​Not a traditional game; focuses on interviews and OTA-style practices

  • Co-founders: Jose Jefferson and Craig Redd
  • ​​ESeven-hour block for expansive interview sessions
  • Travel expenses and a small fee (around $500) for lodging and food may apply

Tropical Bowl

  • Transitioned to a seven-day event

  • Founder: Michael Quartey, a former NFL agent
  • ​​Workouts and interviews spread across a week
  • Travel and hotel costs are the responsibility of the player

It's a misconception that these games attract only small-school players; major conference representatives are also present. As a fledgling agent, it's crucial not to dismiss these opportunities, as they provide a platform for players with smaller profiles.

Recognize that scouts attending these events are often seeking backups and potential special-teamers. While aiming high is natural, being realistic in your goals is equally important.

If your client secures a spot in one of these games, your attendance is imperative. Arriving a day after your client and spending time at their workouts offers a chance to meet and network with NFL scouts, leveraging your immediate currency with evaluators.

In conclusion, attending these all-star games and building relationships with scouts is a major boost toward landing your player in the league. To stay updated on best practices and timeless sports agent business principles, consider subscribing to our NO B.S Sports Marketing Masterclass.