Chad Kelly, disinvited to Scouting Combine, may show up anyway

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The NFL invited Mississippi quarterback Chad Kelly to the Scouting Combine. Then, the NFL uninvited him. Kelly may go anyway.

Agent Duray Oubre told PFT via email that, while Kelly is focused on preparing for his April 2 Pro Day workout, “we are still considering the possibility of traveling to the Combine along with Chad.”

It could set the stage for an awkward — but useful — confrontation. With all coaches, General Managers, and scouts in town for the purposes of obtaining comprehensive information about all of the top recruits in one place, Kelly and other players should be there, regardless of whatever off-field conduct resulted in the NFL banning them. Top prospects will still be evaluated and possibly drafted even if they aren’t at the Combine; keeping them away makes it harder (and more expensive) for all teams to get the information they need.

Given that Kelly was on the list of invited players as of February 1, there’s a chance that the NFL will relent. The more likely result is that the league will double down and resist allowing Kelly to participate with even more zeal.

But while that would keep Kelly away from the official activities in and around Lucas Oil Stadium, the teams should be allowed to invite anyone they choose to the rooms where the interviews happen. Hopefully they will, if Kelly decides to stand up to the powers-that-be and prove the folly of a rule driven not by helping teams make the right draft picks but P.R.

34 responses to “Chad Kelly, disinvited to Scouting Combine, may show up anyway

  1. While not inviting a player to a job fair is within the rules I wonder if actively banning him from participating in interviews would be viewed under Indiana law as tortious interference with an economic opportunity? Could the NFL and the teams be liable under a conspiracy theory that might even threaten their anti-trust exemption? Some enterprising lawyer might pose a legal challenge and seek a temporary restraining order to prevent irreparable harm. This could dissolve into a legal mess though the Kelly family seems content to accept the idiotic decision. Florio would be ecstatic!

  2. I think the agent is trying to make a name for himself. If I were Kelly, I’d continue to use my uncle, Jim Kelly, and let him use his influence on the NFL. There is enough tape out there on this kid. Teams know whether or not they think he can play. The area scouts in the southeast should already have all the background information they need. I wouldn’t try to create a circus. That’s the last thing teams are looking for. Some fans like it when someone stirs the pot a little. Owners and GMs, not so much.

  3. I’ll go out on a limb and say teams can afford any costs associated with doing medicals or interviews with him. I’ll go out on another limb and say if the NFL doesn’t want him participating in there, he won’t be. So unless he’s gonna set up shop outside the stadium, then he’d be wise to not waste the time and money going.

  4. I know PFT likes to go against the grain on issues, but here is the weakness of your argument.

    This new policy does not prevent a player from entering the NFL, it prevents him from attending a league sponsored activity. He will miss the physical, the short interviews, and physical demo — just like any other undrafted free agent!

    The policy does not harm teams or increase their costs at all as the combine process NEVER vets the quantity of players needed for opening day of training camp. Teams have to go out and interview UDFAs as a normal course of business.

    The policy may cost Kelly some cash in his draft position, but that may influence athlete behavior in the future — the real purpose of this policy. Bravo NFL.

  5. If he’s that intent on being seen he should ask a local high school if he can borrow their football field. Put out a PR statement notifying all the teams that he’ll be working out there.

  6. Blows my mind that he is not invited because of his checkered past when you have players actively being investigated for domestic assault (Elliot) being invited the previous year.

  7. This kid makes me nervous. But those numbers in 2015 look awfully good. As a Bills fan, I’m not interested in taking him in the 4the or 5th round as I’ve heard other Bills fans say they hope happens, but if he’s there in the 6th or 7th I’d jump all over him.

  8. Like a lot of young men, Chad Kelly has made some mistakes. The NFL should make teams aware of any background info they have on all the players. Let the more talented ones come to the combine, draft etc. Let the teams decide who they want . Hopefully these young men learn from their mistakes. Let the league pass their judgement on players who do things once they are in the league.

  9. Why is every article in here (almost) written with a distinctive por player (labor) / anti NFL (business) slant?
    You want to get an invite to the table with your future (hopefully) employer….. then follow the rules they have set forth.
    *****que the legalease*****

  10. Wow. Thumbing his nose at the league and creating drama and he hasn’t even been drafted yet. Is this a guy you want as the face of your franchise?

  11. “With the 235th pick in the 2017 NFL draft, the Buffalo Bills select Chad Kelly, quarterback, Ole Miss.”

  12. As he should. The league makes up policies and enforces them on whims. Let the teams….oh I don’t know, interview and get medical info on the players they might just draft?

  13. Why can’t he get a room at a hotel across the street? If teams want to talk to him, they just need to walk over.

  14. “Hopefully they will, if Kelly decides to stand up to the powers-that-be and prove the folly of a rule driven not by helping teams make the right draft picks but P.R.”

    Umm, didn’t PFT have a NFL arrest counter for years?? So is it an issue or not? Please make up your mind.

  15. “Wouldn’t mind seeing my Chiefs take a shot at drafting kelly. ”

    Joe Mixon too. KC is that kind of team.

  16. These guys aren’t in the NFL yet. Whatever off field problems they have, that should be up to the teams to decide whether they want to draft them or not. Once they are in the league, then they can be subject to the NFL’s “justice”.

  17. Wouldnt mind seeing the Giants take a flyer on him with a 5th or 6th round pick. Eli is as even-tempered as they come and that might do wonders for Kelly

  18. Kelly should come out and say he will not accept being drafted beyond the 1st round (if he’s that good), that he will refuse to play that year if it comes to that. From there he can set a new precedent although it could cost him a year of competition if the gamble doesn’t pay off. Even then he’d have power going into next year’s draft, his family can afford it.

  19. I want this kid to get a shot as much as the next guy but by trying to fight the rules that are in place and have been collectively bargained you take a short sided approach that will undoubtedly put you on the NFL’s radar and potentially impact you down the road.
    This kid should just go out and kill his pro day and temas will come to him.
    Quit trying to be the squeaky wheel.

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