NFL International Combine heading to Germany for first time

Fort Hays State defensive lineman Nathan Shepherd runs a drill at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis, Sunday, March 4, 2018. (Michael Conroy/CP)

NEW YORK — The NFL International Combine is headed to Germany for the first time.

The showcase is similar to the annual NFL Combine that takes place in Indianapolis after the Super Bowl, with the goal of trying to discover and evaluate potential NFL talent internationally.

Up to 50 athletes will be selected to go through a series of tests in front of NFL evaluators at a sports training facility outside of Cologne on Oct. 19.

Participants will be evaluated for a possible spot in the NFL’s International Player Pathway program. Following the combine, a select number who show the potential to play in the NFL will be invited to train in the U.S. for three months.

The international pathway started in 2017. For the 2019 season, eight teams will carry an additional overseas player on their practice squads.

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 AFC North teams for the upcoming season. These players are: Moritz Bahringer (Cincinnati Bengals), who was 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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