The 2017 NFL Combine in Indianapolis features about 330 prospects trying to prove their draft potential via a series of multiple tests.
The NFL Scouting Combine usually takes place in Indianapolis’ Lucas Oil Stadium and this year will not be any different. Select scouts, teams, and media will also be on hand to watch college football’s best players showcase their athleticism.
What else do you need to know about the this year’s NFL Combine?
Dates and Broadcast Schedule
"It's the biggest job interview of your lives.”
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) February 25, 2017
First, it’s the date. The Combine begins Tuesday, Feb. 28 and runs through Monday, March 6.
The NFL will broadcast coverage of the scouting event via a TV broadcast on NFL Network and live stream on NFL.com.
Press conferences for players and coaches will be held on March 1 and March 2. That will be broadcasted live at 1 p.m. EST.
On Friday, testing begins with the running backs, offensive linemen, and special teams players. You can catch the live broadcast at 9 a.m. EST.
The quarterbacks, wide receivers and tight ends do their testing on Saturday. That will also be broadcasted at 9 a.m. EST.
Then, the defensive linemen and linebackers get their broadcast time the following day. Tune in on Sunday at 9 a.m. EST for that.
Finally, the event concludes with the defensive backs beginning at 9 a.m. EST on Monday, March 9.
Additionally, each position group arrives in Indianapolis on different days. The OL, RB, and ST arrive on the first day. QBs, WRs, and TEs arrive the next day. Day three and day four feature the arrival of the DL and DBs, respectfully. Upon arrival, each group goes through a rotating schedule of testing, interviews, and exams.
Each group begins their combine experience with registration, interviews, and orientation on their first day. Day two includes more of the same plus some measurements. The groups of prospects go through media availability, bench press, and more testing on their third day. Their time in Indianapolis concludes with on-field workouts on day four.
Those on-field workouts include a 40-yard-dash, broad-jump, vertical-leap, timed cone drills and position specific drills.
— Noles247.com (@Noles247) February 21, 2017
For many fans, the 2017 NFL Combine offers a first look at draft prospects for their favorite teams. Who is competing in Indianapolis this year?
The 2017 participants are headlined by safety Malik Hooker, running back Dalvin Cook, cornerback Marshon Lattimore, safety Jamal Adams, edge Tim Williams, tight end O.J. Howard, quarterback DeShone Kizer, and many others.
However, some of these top prospects may skip certain events if they are injured or unprepared. Moreover, not every draft eligible player is invited to the combine. Plus, some players just forego the event entirely.
Last year, 41 players were drafted that did not attend the annual event, per UPI. Notable players like Antonio Gates, Malcolm Butler, James Harrison and Danny Woodhead have made great NFL careers despite not participating in the combine, per NFL.com.
Therefore, notable snubs like linebacker Elijah Lee, cornerback Aarion Penton, tackle Jylan Ware, and defensive tackle DeAngelo Brown should not get discouraged. Sporting News listed them and others as the top players that did not get invited to Indianapolis.
Also notable, Ole Miss quarterback Chad Kelly had been invited to the event, according to Pro Football Talk. However, he got his invite retracted due to the NFL’s new policy that bans players from the combine if they have been convicted of violent crimes. Kelly pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct two years ago after a bar incident that included him punching people and threatening to shoot up a bar.
Otherwise, 66 SEC players, 60 ACC players, 51 Big Ten players and 46 Pac-12 players were invited to the 2017 scouting combine. The University of Michigan brought the most prospects with 14 invites. They are followed by LSU and Alabama, both tied for the second-most invites with 10 each.
It should also be mentioned that the Scouting Combine offers NFL coaches their first offseason opportunity to speak with the national media. Twenty-nine coaches will have press conferences in Indy. That is an improvement from the 2016 NFL Combine when only 23 head coaches spoke to the media.
According to CBS Sports, the coaches that will not participate are New England’s Bill Belichick, New Orleans’ Sean Payton, and Washington’s Jay Gruden.
It remains to be seen who ends up participating in what at the scouting combine. Either way, you can catch 2017 NFL combine broadcast on NFL Network or NFL.com.
[Featured Image by Julio Cortez/AP Images]