The Colts on Tuesday added German defensive back Marcel Dabo to their roster as part of the NFL's International Player Pathway Program.
Dabo played cornerback and kick returner for the Stuttgart Surge in the European League of Football in 2021, earning a spot on the ELF All-Star team and the league's rookie of the year award. Dabo had 28 tackles and one interception last season, his first with the Surge after playing for the Stuttgart Scorpions youth football program.
At the NFL's International Combine in London last year, Dabo recorded a 4.52-second 40-yard dash, 39-inch vertical leap and 11-foot broad jump. He also did this:
Dabo won't be the only European on the Colts' roster this year, too – he'll be joined by Austrian tackle Bernhard Raimann, who the Colts selected in the third round (No. 77 overall) in the 2022 NFL Draft. Raimann began playing football as a youth member of the Vienna Vikings, who compete in the European League of Football as well.
As part of the International Player Pathway Program, Dabo will be carried on the Colts' roster through the end of training camp. After camp, Dabo will be eligible for an international player practice squad exemption, which would allow the Colts to him as an extra player on their practice squad. Dabo could be elevated to the active roster during the season as well.
The AFC South was randomly selected to have its four teams each receive a player from the International Player Pathway Program in 2022.
More than 50 players from 18 countries have participated in the International Player Pathway Program since its inception in 2017. A number of players from the program have earned spots on NFL rosters, including Eagles left tackle Jordan Mailata, Raiders fullback Jakob Johnson, Commanders tight end Sammis Reyes and Commanders defensive end Efe Obada.