When it comes to the great meeting of minds to select the All Star team every year, there can be skin and hair flying around the boardroom as certain players and positions are debated.
Sometimes, good old-fashioned prejudice can enter the fray. The 'optics' get an annual mention, as does that wonderful phrase 'body of work'.
Jack McCaffrey's prospects never required debate.
There was unanimous agreement that the Dublin half-back was an athletic and footballing freak as he won four All Stars, was voted man of the match in the last two All-Ireland finals - a feat never before accomplished - walked off with the Young Footballer of the Year award in 2013 and the outright Footballer of the Year prize two years later.
At just 26, it appears his county career is gone. There will be no grand announcement or press conference and there will be little time for new Dublin manager Dessie Farrell to face the inevitable barrage of questions about the Clontarf man not signing up for the new regime having initially featured in the league.
And there are no guarantees when a player drifts off a panel. An appetite can be rediscovered overnight, and the desire to perform is strong in someone like McCaffrey who practices sky-high standards in the various strands of his life, working as a doctor in St Luke's Hospital in Kilkenny.
The first question - is this a year out or outright retirement? When Dermot Crowe of the Sunday Independent broke the story, he suggested: "There are strong indications that this decision may see McCaffrey effectively retire from inter-county football and focus on his club Clontarf."
Having won Footballer of the Year in 2015, he took the 2016 season off and travelled to Ethiopia, Kenya, Zambia, Malawi and Tanzania, working with the GOAL charity as a doctor.
During that time, Crowe travelled to spend time with him and produce an interview feature like no other with a Gaelic footballer. I'd be siding with any hunch Crowe might have.
He's not the first to retire in his prime. Brian Corcoran was 27 when he stepped off the Cork panel in 2001, later rejoining in 2004.
DJ Carey considered retirement himself at 27, the speculation gathering pace in early February 1998, and he sat out six weeks. In 2002, he only came back into the Kilkenny team for the All-Ireland semi-final against Tipperary.
McCaffrey's reluctance opens the door for speculation. He had been struggling with the kind of winter injury that wears down a summer flyer, taken off in his last game in that ugly battle against Tyrone which they lost just before the cessation of GAA activities.
He is widely admired and loved among the Dublin panel, a popular figure with a strict sense of what is right and proper.
Working in Kilkenny, he is nicely placed outside the Dublin bubble. Much like Roger Bannister, who worked as a neurologist and trained in his spare time, he subscribes to the theory that the athlete is a mere sliver of the overall man.
There might have been difficulties for him returning to training with the rest of the Dublin panel amid the coronavirus pandemic, considering he works in frontline services. There has been no categoric dismissal of that yet.
Perspective has never been an issue for him due to his profession and having travelled widely and revelled in the company of his fellow students who knew nothing and asked less of his sporting prowess.
It is in the long gazes at McCaffrey when he steps outside his function as a Dublin footballer that a fuller picture emerges.
Recently he granted an interview where he spoke extensively about the GAA's amateur status, stating that: "You play with your club, you play with your county, and there is no barrier or difference."
Restrictions on Dublin players' appearances with their clubs would run contrary to those sentiments.
Another tale. In the 2017 All-Ireland final, he ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament and was replaced. Later that evening as the cameras rolled at the banquet, capturing McCaffrey in their line of vision, he made several goofy faces to the amusement of those around him.
Before long, Dublin's media manager Seamus McCormack had a discreet word with McCaffrey. The fun stopped.
Which jars with the overall image of McCaffrey. The day after All-Ireland finals, it is customary for reporters to show up at the team banquet the morning after. Unburdened by 'the next game', McCaffrey was a treat. Easy company, sharing insights, making it all look so easy.
Perhaps this pandemic pause has triggered a reset in people's minds. Maybe McCaffrey is done for now with training with rumours of counties having never truly stopped their build-up to a potential Championship.
He's won five All-Ireland titles, and been part of the greatest team ever. What more is there to achieve? For McCaffrey, there's a bigger world out there. More are coming around to that thinking.