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No combine, no problem for some Steelers

The NFL has descended upon Indianapolis to sort out the first-rounders from the free agents.

But if history is any indication, omissions have already been committed and players who didn't receive invitations to this year's NFL Scouting Combine will wind up in the NFL, anyway.

A look back at current members of the Steelers defense when they were at the NFL Scouting Combine.

The Steelers know that drill as well as the three-cone drill.

A list of players they've employed in the Kevin Colbert era who never made it to Indy to be poked, prodded, interviewed, tested and analyzed includes:

OLB James Harrison: It's just as well; there probably isn't a drill that would have identified the former Kent State linebacker as the player most likely to return an interception 100 yards for a touchdown in Super Bowl XLIII.

RB Willie Parker: He never got to run the 40 for the scouts, but he was faster than all 11 Seattle Seahawks on the field during that 75-yard dash into the end zone in Super Bowl XL.

CB Ike Taylor: He's started three Super Bowls, two of which the Steelers won, since arriving as a fourth-round pick in 2003. It has never been confirmed that he wasn't a combine participant because his invite was sent to "Swaggin' U" rather than Louisiana-Lafayette.

CB William Gay: His three pick-sixes in 2014 came within one of tying the NFL record in that department shared by Ken Houston ('71 Oilers), Jim Kearney ('72 Chiefs) and Eric Allen ('93 Eagles). Wonder how those guys did at the combine?


A look back at current members of the Steelers offense when they were at the NFL Scouting Combine.

OL Willie Colon:** When you're from The Bronx you're tough enough, period. Demonstrating as much at the combine would have been overkill for Colon.

S Ryan Clark: He wasn't drafted, either. But that didn't stop him from playing for the Giants, the Redskins, the Steelers and the Redskins again in a 13-year career that ended this week.

NT Steve McLendon: He's played in 63 games for the Steelers since arriving as an undrafted rookie from Troy in 2009, and he's made a combined 21 starts the past two seasons. The scouts would have loved his Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles backpack in Indy, had he only gotten the opportunity to show it off.

ILB Vince Williams: A lack of exposure in Indianapolis didn't prevent Williams from becoming a sixth-round pick and starting 11 games as a rookie in 2013. He only started twice in 2014 but continued to grow his game and carve out a role for himself on the Steelers' defense.

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