The NFL Scouting Combine could soon be on the move.
Per Dan Graziano of ESPN, the league will open bidding to cities other than Indianapolis to host the annual combine beginning with the 2023 event. Indianapolis has hosted the combine every year since 1987 and will do so again in 2022, but the city will have to win the rights for 2023 for the streak to continue beyond next winter.
Teams will also be able to inform the league of desires to host future Super Bowl games and drafts. The league moving drafts from city to city each spring in recent years has been a hit among viewers and attendees, and next year’s player-selection process is scheduled to occur in Las Vegas.
Interestingly, Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk named Vegas as an ideal spot for a first relocated combine because fans would flock to the city as a post-Super Bowl winter escape and to wager on workouts such as the 40-yard dash. It’s assumed the 2023 combine, wherever it takes place, will feature separate entertainment not available to those watching on television and other aspects to generate a party-like atmosphere for what is commonly a missable experience for those who don’t live and breathe football 12 months out of the year.
The NFL has successfully made attending even the final day of a draft a bucket-list item. There’s no reason to believe it can’t achieve similar success with future combines.