Sep 22, 2013; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones (11) catches a pass as Miami Dolphins free safety Reshad Jones (20) defends in the second half at Sun Life Stadium. Miami won 27-23. Mandatory Credit: Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports
Adam Schefter is a must-follow if you’re an NFL fan. If you don’t already know that, I just want to welcome you to being an NFL fan. Follow Adam Schefter.
Schefter’s latest weekly “Blitz” piece is up on ESPN.com, and he raises a great point about recent Alabama prospects and pretty serious injury issues coming into the NFL.
The point was raised in light of the fact that Atlanta Falcons receiver Julio Jones–a former ‘Bama stud receiver prospect and top 10 pick–was placed on IR recently with a foot injury.
Schefter goes on to point out that other players like Eddie Lacy (foot), D.J. Fluker (shoulder), Chance Warmack (knees), Jesse Williams (knee), Trent Richardson and Mark Ingram (knees), Dee Milliner (five operations), and Dre’ Kirkpatrick (knee) have all had pretty serious injury issues that were pretty much bypassed by NFL teams.
Another player that Schefter didn’t mention was All-American offensive lineman Barrett Jones, a fourth round pick of the St. Louis Rams, who has also had injury issues. There was a point where Jones was considered a late-first round selection.
In case you’re keeping track, the injuries didn’t prevent NFL teams from taking all of the aforementioned players (sans Lacy and Jesse Williams) in the first round of their respective drafts. In fact, most of those players are top 10 or 20 selections.
So is there something in the water at Alabama, or is this all just one big coincidence?
Certainly this won’t be good for the program going forward, and if medical red flags continue to pop up for their top ranked prospects, it will be an asterisk next to every player the team churns out. NFL teams maintain that all players coming in a draft class are evaluated on a case-by-case basis, but what kind of extra mileage are these ‘Bama players getting that is causing them to come into the NFL with such serious (potentially) injury issues?
Schefter raises a great point, in my opinion, something that will be worth monitoring as we approach the 2014 NFL Draft.