One does not have to be the Pythia (Oracle at Delphi), Nostradamus, or a printer of Fortune Cookies to know that if you are careful enough to word your prediction well, you will often be correct – regardless of what actually happens.
If you give a number, don’t give a context.
If you proclaim a great victory, don’t say for which side.
If you forecast calamity, don’t prognosticate the means of the downfall.
It’s beneficial to play both sides of the fence, but in an obscure enough manner that it doesn’t seem obvious beforehand. So after the fact, whatever you said can be seen to apply to what actually came to pass.
Such is the life of the talking heads that spin draft prospects.
If you check out the strengths for a prospect like Jadeveon Clowney, the uber-athletic DE sounds like a sure-fire Hall of Fame candidate. But the accolades are tempered by negatives comments regarding taking plays off and a lack of productivity to match the athleticism, making him sound like a sure-fire bust.
In the end, regardless of how Clowney performs, the experts were correct.
They said he had the attributes of an elite stud.
They said he had the attributes of an over-hyped bust.
To that end, I’m willing to offer up a few predictions about the upcoming draft:
#1 – The Bengals’ draft will be better than average.
The obvious interpretation is that the Bengals will have a very good draft overall.
But the prediction is vague enough that it can be applied to either a singular pick or the entire draft class. And even if their entire draft is horrible, it can be compared to their drafts in the 90’s, and be said to be better than those averages.
#2 – There will be a surprise with the top overall pick.
If the Texans go QB, we can say we are surprised they didn’t take the BPA.
If the Texans go BPA, we can say we are surprised they didn’t take the QB.
And if the Texans trade the pick, well, that’s easily counted as a surprise.
#3 – The Browns will screw up.
The obvious interpretation is that the Browns will have a horrible draft overall.
But even if the Browns miss on any 1 pick, well, they screwed up that 1 pick. Even if the Browns make solid picks with every single pick, they can still be accused of screwing up by making a case they should have traded up or down.
#4 – Somebody will get stuck waiting in the Green Room.
The obvious interpretation is that a lone player will get stuck in a Brady Quinn-esque purgatory waiting and waiting to get called upon as the rest of the room empties.
But every player in the Green Room, even the first pick, ends up waiting for some amount of time.
So now I need to sit back, wait a few weeks, and watch all of my predictions come true.