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Draft longshot looking for a chance

INDIANAPOLIS -- Case Western quarterback Dan Whalen stood outside the media entrance at Lucas Oil Stadium while the NFL combine's invited guests performed for teams inside.

Whalen, left off the list of combine invites, finished the 2009 season with 34 touchdown passes and eight interceptions to earn Division III first-team All-America honors from the American Football Coaches Association and D3Football.com.

Whalen, from Cleveland, stands 6-foot-1 and weighs 190 pounds. That's small by NFL standards. The competition level he faced at Case Western stands as another hurdle for Whalen to overcome. His agent, Ron Todd, annually works the combine to get the word out on the lesser-known prospects he represents.

Todd was distributing a media packet featuring quotes from former Browns coach Sam Rutigliano, among others, advocating Whalen as a prospect.

The rosters I maintain for every NFL team show 11 quarterbacks listed at 6-1 or shorter, counting players scheduled to become restricted and unrestricted free agents. Three are with the Saints and two with the Dolphins, an indication teams with links to Bill Parcells might be flexible.

The Saints' Drew Brees is listed at 6-0 and 209 pounds. Seattle's Seneca Wallace is 5-11.