The NFL has created its own version of American Idol, but the contestants show up with something more than their cleats.
For payment of $275, anyone can try out for the NFL. The league admitted that it will consider anyone at least three years removed from high school in response to the publicity stunt launched by Lauren Silbermann, a would-be kicker who had never kicked a football in a competitive setting.
Now, the NFL is touting the results of the Regional Combines by pointing out via press release that 29 players who participated in the Regional Combine and/or the Super Regional Combine (apparently, it can fly) were on NFL rosters to start the 2013 season.
(Only 10 were on active rosters. Another 14 were on practice squads, and five were on the injured reserve list.)
It’s a great supplement to the Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, since the scouts who work for the Scouting Combine usually aren’t quite good enough to scout for NFL teams, or they would be. As a result, the Scouting Combine often overlooks players who are good enough to play in the NFL.
But why prop up the Regional/Super Regional Combine process by pointing out how many have made it up (or down) the funnel and landed on NFL rosters? Proclaiming the existence of a semi-plausible path to the NFL will encourage even more folks who are either delusional or looking for free publicity (or both) to pay the $275 and show up.
And to the folks who are either delusional or looking for free publicity, registration for next year’s Regional Combines opens soon.
So to all the folks with a fantasy of being on someone’s fantasy football roster, all you need to do is train, say your prayers, take your vitamins, and come up with $275.