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Utilizing the draft

I heard a stat on the radio today about how something like only 24% of players on the Redskins roster were actually drafted by the team, as compared to 40% or so of players on more consistently successful teams like the Titans and Colts.

This got me thinking about how DC United and the rest of MLS would compare.

Only 7 of the 29 players listed on the club's roster right now were actually drafted by DCU(Cordeiro, Dyachenko, McTavish, Namoff, Olsen, Quaranta, Thorpe). That's 24%. Note that I'm not including guys who were signed by the club after going undrafted (Pat Carroll) and guys who were drafted by someone else but traded to DC before ever getting MLS action with another club (Mike Zaher).

Then I went and looked at the rosters of some of the more consistently successful clubs around the league, and I wasn't at all surprised at the results. 45% of the players on Houston's roster were drafted by either the Dynamo or the original San Jose franchise before they moved to Houston. And 44% of New England's roster was drafted by them.

I also took a look at Columbus's roster, but found that only 29% of their players were drafted by them. Maybe that's a hint that the Crew's success won't be sustainable?

In the end, who knows, this could just be a coincidence. But I think more likely it's a sign that goes across multiple sports that says that teams who place a lot of emphasis on drafting quality players will be the most successful. That might sound really obvious, but apparently its a lot harder than it sounds. At least for United's management team it has been.