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#pounditSaturday, July 20, 2024

Report: Top NFL agency makes big change over CJ Stroud draft controversy

CJ Stroud ready to throw a pass

Aug 10, 2023; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; Houston Texans quarterback C.J. Stroud (7) throws the ball during warmups before a game against the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports

After cognitive testing became a major story prior to last year’s NFL Draft, one top agency is taking the issue off the table in 2024.

Athletes First, a top agency representing a number of NFL players, privately informed teams recently that it has advised clients not to take part in any cognitive or psychological testing prior to the draft, according to Kalyn Kahler of The Athletic. In an email to teams, the agency said that “the fact that certain results and performance were leaked publicly last year” created inappropriate discussions around draft prospects and was unfair.

That is a direct reference to Athletes First client CJ Stroud, who was subjected to a number of negative stories after it was reported that he scored just 18 out of 100 on the S2 test last year. The Houston Texans selected him No. 2 overall anyway, and he was comfortably the best rookie quarterback last season, outplaying others who reportedly scored much higher.

Notably, Athletes First does not represent any of the top quarterback prospects in the draft this year.

The rumors surrounding Stroud certainly turned out to be baseless. Between that and the negative stories that came from the leaked test scores, there does not seem to be much upside for prospects to take the test.

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