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Wayne Chrebet

Regional combine provides another road to the NFL

Regional combine provides another road to the NFL

With NFL dreams and sleepy eyes, small-school standouts, practice-squad castoffs and a pack of unknown draft hopefuls stepped onto the Ravens' indoor practice field Saturday morning. For many of them, it was the closest they will come to playing in the NFL. But it was an opportunity that didn't exist for relative no-names like themselves two years ago.

The NFL conducted one of its 11 regional combines at Ravens headquarters in Owings Mills on Saturday. More than 130 under-the-radar NFL prospects — most with ties to the region — slipped on cleats and squeezed into compression shorts, hoping to earn an invitation to the NFL Super Regional Combine on March 30-31 at Detroit's Ford Field...