Shane Ray and Randy Gregory, two players who could help any NFL team’s defense, didn’t help themselves in the lead-in to the draft.

On Wednesday at a league-sponsored event, the Missouri defensive end and the Nebraska linebacker owned up to their errors involving marijuana, both hoping such transgressions won’t mean they fall during Thursday night’s opening round. Or slip out of the round entirely.

Ray was issued a misdemeanor citation Monday morning after a trooper found a small amount of marijuana in the player’s car. Gregory tested positive for marijuana at the NFL combine in February.

“I’m learning from this. It’s a learning curve and I have to keep on the road,” said Ray, who added he spoke with Commissioner Roger Goodell and was told to “look forward, not just harp on this.

“This is not any indication of who I am. I made a bad decision.”

The timing of Ray’s incident so close to the draft led him and his representatives to call the teams that expressed interest in him. He said he was asked by each club what happened and that he admitted he made a mistake.

Gregory believes he has convinced NFL teams they should want him and that he’s a good citizen who is maturing, as well as a superb football player.

“I made a mistake, I know,” Gregory said. “I’m 22 years old. I can’t justify it.

“The thing is to try to be the best professional I can.”

A player’s character is not always a big factor, said former Bucs and Colts coach Tony Dungy.

“Some people are going to get caught up with talent,’’ he said. There are ‘‘always going to be places for every player no matter what.’’

Every coach who has worn a headset in the NFL believes he can handle “problem children.”

“It’s always going to be enticing for us, regardless of their issues, if they have tremendous skills,” Cardinals general manager Steve Keim said. “I’ve said this before, if Hannibal Lecter ran a 4.3 we’d probably diagnose it as an eating disorder, you know.’’

Jordan apologizes

Dion Jordan apologized to the Miami Dolphins on Wednesday, one day after his suspension for the 2015 season was announced for another violation of the NFL’s drug policy. Jordan released a statement through the NFL Players Association, saying he deeply regrets “putting myself in this position.”

The statement confirmed Jordan’s one-year suspension was triggered by a third violation of the league’s drug policy, and that his misstep was having one of his tests show an improper level of dilution.

No charges for Randle

Kansas prosecutors declined to bring felony charges against Dallas Cowboys running back Joseph Randle following a domestic disturbance at a hotel in Wichita, saying they concluded after reviewing the extensive police investigation that there is a lack of evidence to support them.

The case may still be referred by police to the city prosecutor’s office for potential misdemeanor charges.

The Dallas running back has denied he threatened his former girlfriend or pulled a gun during an incident that led to his arrest on a marijuana possession charge that was later dropped.