After my article breaking down the MLS drafts was published, one of our followers tweeted at us that he'd be curious to see how much MLS playing time each of the draft slots wound up playing. It piqued my curiosity too, and I delved back into the spreadsheet I compiled to find some answers.
|Round||Minutes||Games Played||Average Minutes||Average Games Played||% Minutes of Previous Round||% Games of Previous Round||% Minutes of First Round||% Games of First Round|
First Round picks played an average of 2510.15 minutes over 39.11 games. Bear in mind these are players in all drafts from 2010 through 2013, so guys from the 2010 draft have obviously had more time than the newcomers. Still, the difference between the rounds is pretty staggering - especially the further into the SuperDraft you go. By the time you've made your way to the Sixth Round, you get next to nothing - only Toronto FC's Taylor Morgan (1 game, 15 minutes) and the Philadelphia Union's Leo Fernandes (7 games, 281 minutes) saw any playing time at all. Perhaps MLS realized that the Fifth- and Sixth Rounds yielded very few players who saw minutes and that's why the 2014 SuperDraft will only have 4 rounds?
So what's the best pick? The Fifth Overall Pick (FC Dallas' pick) is the minutes leader with 17,340 total minutes, however the Second Overall Pick (Philadelphia Union's pick) played the most amount of games with 251. Then again the Forty-Seventh Overall Pick (San Jose Earthquakes' Third Round Pick) has the highest average amount of games played with 63.5. The worst picks seem to be 32, 40-41, 52, 54, 61, 64-67, 69, 71-74, 77-81, 83-88, 90-95, 97-99, and 101-114 as none of these picks ever played a minute for their teams.
If there's one certainty about Draft Day, it's that each SuperDraft has it's shares of finds and busts. 2014 will be no exception to this rule.