NFL to hold combine in Cologne, Germany this October

The NFL’s bid to find players around the world will come to Germany this October.

The league announced that it will hold an International Scouting Combine in Cologne on October 19. The invitational scouting showcase, mirrored after the annual NFL Combine staged in the United States, is designed to discover and evaluate potential NFL talent from around the globe. Up to 50 players will be invited to go through drills based on the ones that college prospects do in Indianapolis before each year’s draft.

Australia hosted the event last year and some prospects will be invited to continue training in the United States. The next step would be a spot in the International Player Pathway program, which places players with teams for offseason work and allows for them to remain on the practice squad without counting against the 10-player limit.

NFL COO of International Damani Leech:

“Following last year’s inaugural International Combine in Australia, we are excited to explore the talent pool internationally. Since 2017, the NFL’s International Player Pathway program has provided international athletes the opportunity to compete at the NFL level and develop their skills, and we hope to discover new talent through this event in Germany.”

Carolina Panthers defensive end Efe Obada and Philadelphia Eagles tackle Jordan Mailata, a 2018 seventh-round pick, have come to the NFL through the program in recent years.

The requirements are fairly straightforward. To participate, a player must meet  NFL eligibility requirements and have citizenship outside the United States or Canada. If a player meets these criteria, they should send a detailed description of their athletic career along with any video highlights to [email protected].

NFL International Player Pathway Program background:

Instituted in 2017, the program aims to provide international athletes the opportunity to compete at the NFL level, improve their skills, and ultimately earn a spot on an NFL roster. For the upcoming 2019 NFL season, eight teams will carry an additional overseas player on their practice squads as part of the International Player Pathway program.

Joining AFC East clubs for the 2019 season are: Valentine Holmes (New York Jets), a former professional rugby player in Australia, Jakob Johnson (New England Patriots), a former University of Tennessee tight end and German Football League player, Durval Queiroz Neto (Miami Dolphins), who played football in Brazil, and Christian Wade (Buffalo Bills), a former England national rugby player.

The four players that participated in the program in 2018 will return to their NFC North teams for the upcoming season. These players are: Moritz Böhringer (Cincinnati Bengals), who was originally drafted in the sixth round by the Minnesota Vikings in 2016, German Football League player Christopher Ezeala (Baltimore Ravens), former British American Football League player Tigie Sankoh (Cleveland Browns) and former English professional rugby player Christian Scotland-Williamson (Pittsburgh Steelers).



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