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German wide receiver one of NFL Draft's biggest sleepers

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  • By Andy Fenelon NFL.com
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Moritz Boehringer has played football for only four years. In Germany. On fields that rival the ones high-school teams play on in the United States.

Yet that hasn't stopped him from becoming one of the biggest sleepers and best-kept secrets of the 2016 NFL Draft that some teams wish could be kept quiet a little longer.

That's because he's 6-foot-4 and 225 pounds, runs a 40-yard dash of 4.39 seconds, and has a 37-inch vertical (think Devin Funchess or Dorial Green-Beckham).

"I'd be intrigued, that's for sure," said NFL Media senior analyst Gil Brandt, a former longtime front-office executive with the Dallas Cowboys who signed his share of players lacking big-time football experience. "He's the kind of guy you rush out and see."

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It's not certain how many or which teams will be present on Thursday at Florida Atlantic's pro day, where Boehringer will work out with FAU prospects, including DT Trevon Coley and CB Cre'von LeBlanc. But the Cardinals, Packers, Broncos and Vikings have all shown interest in him. Minnesota has a meeting with the German receiver scheduled for Wednesday night.

Boehringer picked up a football for the first time in 2013, joining the Crailsheim Titans junior youth team in Germany. He was promoted to the country's premier league (German Football League) in 2015 and was told he'd be brought along slowly. Instead, he dominated at the highest level and was selected the GFL's Rookie of the Year after posting 70 catches for 1,461 yards and 16 touchdowns in his first season with the Schwäbisch Hall Unicorns.

While Boehringer is still considered a longshot, there have been other prospects who have played abroad that have started to pave the way for future international signings. The Cowboys signed British DE Efe Obada as an undrafted free agent last year after he played in just five games in 2014 with the London Warriors. Obada spent time on Dallas' practice squad and was waived earlier this month before being signed to the Kansas City Chiefs roster.

In February, 27-year-old Frenchman Anthony Dable' -- a 6-5, 215-pound wide receiver who, like Boehringer, also played in the GFL last season -- was signed by the New York Giants after a single workout. Unlike Boehringer, however, Dable' was a free agent who didn't have to go through the draft process because of his age. Boehringer is only 22 and draft-eligible.

He interrupted his mechanical engineering studies back home in order to train with the likes of Anquan Boldin and Pierre Garcon at XPE Sports Academy in Boca Raton, Fla. Thursday's pro day workout should go a long way toward deciding whether some team will use one of its allotted draft picks on him.

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