I'm sorry. I thought I'd answered this one. I don't know what happened to my post.
Me? I really don't hunt either.
Rubs and scrapes are both good signs, but they are not necessarily indicators of future activity. I've camped out over a scrape and eaten tag soup. I've put up a stand near a rub line and not seen a single buck.
What does get me worked up? A bunch of things.
Let's say I was given a property to hunt cold. The first thing I would do is go looking for any sign at all. Tracks, scat, beds-- anything that would tell me I had deer around.
Next? I would try to establish the bed/travel/food pattern. If I stumble on a bedding area, the next thing I look for is where they're feeding. If I find where they're feeding, I want to find where they're bedding.
Once that's established, I start looking for the best place to intercept the deer. It will usually be somewhere between the bed and the food and it will be a place of my choosing, not the deer's. I will pick the spot that's most advantageous for me and my style of hunting. If the food is the middle of a field with clover in it, I may chose to erect a stand where the deer will gather before going out to feed. If they're feasting on acorns, I may set up close to the best trees. If there is a choke point between the food and the bed, I may choose to exploit that.
How do scrapes and rubs fit in? Usually bucks make that sort of sign along the travel corridors, at the edges of food sources and close to beds. They are one of the clues I use to figure out where the bulk of the deer are going to be.
If rubs and scrapes aren't my big turn-on, what is? Structure. You can hunt deer the way you fish bass. Bass have predictable habits of hanging out in deep water, traveling along structure to feed, and then traveling back. They take the easiest, safest route. They like the edges of things. Deer are the same way. If I see a ridgeline on a topo, I look for a saddle. If I see a crop field, I'm looking for a peninsula of trees or a gully-- something that will allow the deer to get in and out easily. If I see an oak grove, I'm looking for a protected hillside or a cedar thicket where they can bed. When I get down and start pounding the ground, I invariably find additional sign-- track, scat, old rubs, old scrapes etc.