Not sure when or where the term "workout warrior" developed but we hear the term every year around March and April, leading up to the draft.
It's the guy who wasn't that high on the initial draft boards, mainly because his three or four years of college tape didn't make anyone drool. Yet, his workout at the combine and/or his college Pro Day has changed some opinions.
Obviously, the best example of that this year is Memphis defensive tackle Dontari Poe, who wowed the teams at the combine with his 4.8 time in the 40-yard dash and bench-pressing a combine-best 44 reps of 225 pounds.
Speaking generically about all players on, head coach Jason Garrett said Wednesday that "workout warriors" are intriguing but that can be deceiving. And ultimately, the game tape is what matters the most.
"Sure he ran fast or he is really strong or this and that . . . but what does the film look like," Garrett said. "Ultimately you're evaluating football players. The guys that I've been around and we've evaluated together . . . we've relied on the tape. Now sometimes a workout can help you – but it can be good and bad. Sometimes you find a good player who didn't run that fast. So it goes both ways. Ultimately, you've got to go back to the tape."
Garrett said Hall of Fame running back Marcus Allen, who starred for the Raiders and then Chiefs, is one example he used where the workout didn't match the player's production.
"What did he run? 4.65 . . . you never saw him get caught," Garrett said. "Jerry Rice is a good example. You have to watch the tape and do your best making those judgments. It's not easy."
However, Garrett said he can understand why some teams put more stock into workouts than others.
"It's seductive when you see a guy who runs a 4.28," Garrett said. "'Boy we can do something with that, can't we? But it should be: 'Ok that's really revealing . . . now let's go back to the tape.'"