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Indianapolis Colts

NFL Combine Staying In Indianapolis Through 2020

Intro: This week marks the 30th year of the NFL Scouting Combine being held in Indianapolis. What makes Indy so appealing in continuing to host the Combine?


INDIANAPOLIS – For the rest of this week, every NFL team will have the remote location of "Indianapolis, Indiana" as their home base.

It's been that way for one week every year since 1987, when the city of Indianapolis began hosting the league's annual Scouting Combine.

And that partnership will hold true through at least 2020.

In January, Visit Indy and the NFL agreed on a five-year extension to keep the Combine in Indianapolis, breaking away from the one-year partnerships they previously had.

With rumors of the Combine possibly leaving Indianapolis, Visit Indy Vice President Chris Gahl made sure those reports were squelched.

"We were viciously competing with other cities and ended up keeping it safe and sound in Indianapolis through 2020," Gahl said on CBS Sports Radio in January.

"That's big news because it's 8 million in economic impact each year. More than 1,000 journalists from all over the world come in to cover the X's and O's of the Combine, but also they are experiencing the city. So it's really invaluable."

The possible allure of the new Inglewood stadium project outside of Los Angeles had included the thought of the Combine moving there.

However, National Football Scouting, Inc. President Jeff Foster has several reasons why the Combine has been in Indianapolis for now 30 years.

"Until IU Health and the Crowne Plaza move to Los Angeles, I'm not interested in talking about it," Foster, who brought the NFS to Indianapolis (from Tulsa) in 2007, told CBS 4 earlier this year.

"I would ask this L.A. group if they have a pipeline underground where they can connect four mobile MRI units to their local hospital. That's what we do here. When Lucas Oil Stadium was built, there were enough people who had the forethought to build that infrastructure to where we can drive four mobile MRI units into the basement of Lucas Oil Stadium, literally connect them and it's as if you're sitting 16 blocks up to IU Health.

"That's invaluable to us."

This week, a record 1,200 media members will attend the Scouting Combine in the heart of the Midwest.

The process for running the Combine has little down time for players coming into the city for four days of hardly any rest.

From medical testing, to team interviews and NFL Network's coverage of on-the-field drills, the Combine is an all-encompassing process involving so many different entitles.

With time precious, a venue like Lucas Oil Stadium and Indianapolis is a virtual must.

"When we set out for the (Lucas Oil Stadium) blueprint, the architecture elements for that, it was 12 meeting rooms within the bowels of Lucas Oil Stadium and two exhibit halls so they can conduct the business, while on the floor of the stadium, the physical tryouts are going," Gahl says. "Having a stadium that is multi purposed and connected with nearby hotels helps.

"To have (the Combine) through 2020 here in Indianapolis is really a big win and it really allows us to make the event even bigger."

A look back at the Colts last three draft classes participating in the NFL Combine.

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