This time of year always fills me with anticipation, fascination and speculation, but I put my trust in no man. The NFL Scouting Combine in still underway in Indianapolis and reports are starting to trickle into the matrix and hysteria is mounting.
I love the combine but I hate the fact that it kicks off the most volatile dispensation of the league year. Information is the currency of talk radio. We sell, barter and trade information and listeners purchase that information by listening. But when it comes to sources -- whether anonymous or those close to the situation -- and other reports, I believe very few of them.
Like the report that says Matt Barkley blew away the Arizona Cardinals during the interview process. I believe it's misinformation; somebody got the report wrong or talked to a minion that was blown away but didn't hear it from the man's mouth.
Why would a person in authority tell anybody what he's thinking? Why should I work so hard at evaluating a player, spend so much time and money and resources to determine the value of a prospect, and then tell you what I believe about that kid one way or the other?
I can use it as a smokescreen, where the other team doesn't know whether I'm being sincere or not. And this is why the NFL Combine and the weeks leading up to the draft is the most unsettling time of the league year. The great Dance of Deception has begun in earnest.