Mark Dominik gives his perspective on Wonderlic scores
With many of the likely draft scenarios in the top five of the first round continuing to suggest the Bucs will be in position to draft LSU cornerback Morris Claiborne, the player’s reportedly low score on the Wonderlic test has been a frequent subject of much debate.
But what’s most important in this conversation is this: What do the Bucs think of Wonderlic scores in general?
The answer? It’s not totally irrelevant, but it’s not something they’re hung up on, either.
“There’s a lot of different factors that go into the evaluation of a player,” general manager Mark Dominik said this afternoon. “. . .There’s lot of different pieces. That’s a piece of the puzzle. No doubt about it. But you have to know the entire picture and make sure you get an accurate understanding of where the Wonderlic is scored and how it correlates to an individual player.”
A better indicator of success, Dominik suggested, is the feel for the player gained during Combine interviews and pre-draft visits. That’s when players are quizzed on their understanding of certain schematic concepts and their ability to recall information is tested.
The Wonderlic, while used as a measure of intelligence, does not examine anything specifically related to football.
“The reality is it’s all about the interview and talking to them about football and how much can they recollect,” Dominik said. “That was a big thing with Josh Freeman when we made the selection. His ability to retain and recollect was really important to us.
“To me, it’s all about the relevance of what the player does. How does he learn the position, how much does he retain and how much can he retain and regurgitate when you have a chance to sit with him one-on-one.”
Back when the news of Claiborne's test score first broke, I mentioned something that many seem to forget that is critically important: The Bucs now employ Ron Cooper, the former LSU secondary coach who now leads the Bucs' defensive backs. Who knows more about Claiborne than that guy?