After months of residing near the tops of big boards nationwide, eligible prospects for the 2013 NFL Draft now find themselves in the midst of hysteria. It happens nearly every year in the draft where a player is seemingly in free fall as pick after pick comes off of the board without their name being chosen. Despite the history, it never ceases to amaze just how much of a copycat league the NFL actually is.
Of course the two players I am referring two in this year’s conversation are pass rusher extraordinaire Jarvis Jones from the Georgia Bulldogs and space eater defensive tackle Star Lotulelei of the Utah Utes. Both players’ health has come under scrutiny as a result of the medical testing that takes place at the NFL Scouting Combine.
For Jones, spinal stenosis is the issue and it had been talked about coming into the event for the 6-foot-2 242-pounder. Despite being ultra productive in his two seasons in the SEC with 28 sacks, teams are considered as to whether or not he will have the longevity desired out of a top selection.
With Lotulelei, he was unable to participate in workouts at the Combine due to an abnormality in an echocardiogram which revealed that he has a heart condition. Lotulelei’s heart was not pumping properly and currently all that is known is that further testing will be required. For a big man down in the trenches play after play however, this type of issue is a bit disconcerting for sure.
All of this creates some uncertainty about these players, sure, but what we do know is that they are both ridiculous on-field talents. Jones is an unstoppable force out on the field with a relentless drive to get the opposing quarterback on the ground while Lotulelei is nearly impossible to block one on one and in commanding double teams he makes everyone around him better. These two may drop on draft day, but don’t be surprised if whichever teams get lucky enough to land them get steals at the next level.