Koger, Watson to participate in regional NFL combine

PLYMOUTH, Mich. -- Two former Michigan tight ends will participate in a Regional NFL Combine, held at the Chicago Bears training facility on March 3.

Both Kevin Koger and Steve Watson, who were passed over for next week's national NFL Scouting Combine, told WolverineNation on Monday they were planning on participating in the regional combine.

"Since I'm not going to the actual combine, it's a point for me to go out there and get exposure," Koger said before a workout at BarwisMethods. "I just want to go down there. It'll be good to test there before Pro Day. I know Pro Day will be more important than the regional combine but it'll be nice to get comfortable in that kind of environment."

Both Koger and Watson hope to advance to the Super Regional combine, held on March 30-31 in Detroit at Ford Field.

Koger, though, felt he was close to receiving an invite to the national combine. Three former Michigan players are expected to attend next week's combine: defensive lineman Mike Martin, center David Molk and wide receiver Junior Hemingway.

"I was a little disappointed. I was expecting a combine invite," Koger said. "They invited 16 to 18 tight ends and I thought I would be in one of those slots but I guess not. Everything happens for a reason and it's not the end of the world. I'm not stressing over it too much. I was kind of upset the first couple of days, but I got over it."

One player who is not participating in the regional or national scouting combines is defensive lineman Ryan Van Bergen. After discussion with his agent, he decided to instead focus on Michigan's Pro Day, scheduled for March 15.

"I'm just going to save it all for Pro Day," Van Bergen said. "We decided it would be best."

Van Bergen, Molk, Martin, Koger and Watson -- along with former offensive lineman Mark Huyge -- are all training for the draft at the BarwisMethods training center in Plymouth, Mich. It is run by former Michigan strength and conditioning coach Mike Barwis.