22 Feb 2013
During his freshman season at USC, Jarvis Jones felt his shoulders go numb after a tackle. His symptoms went away quickly and he expected to return to play.
But the Trojan medical staff was concerned that Jones had something more concerning than a stinger – a condition that causes numbness on just one side of the body. When testing showed that Jones had stenosis of his cervical spine, USC doctors refused to clear him for contact.
That’s not uncommon. Cervical spinal stenosis ended the career of Michael Irvin, multiple offensive linemen and Cooper Manning. It could be the reason Scott Fujita was forced into retirement last season, along with many other players whose careers ended early with “neck” injuries.
However, after racking up 28 sacks in two seasons at Georgia, Jones is now considered a lock to be drafted in the first round.
How was Jones allowed to play after the specialists at USC refused to clear him? How likely is his condition to limit him in the future? How will a NFL medical staff assess the risk of drafting Jones? All are complicated questions.
1 comment, Last at 24 Feb 2013, 10:27pm by JonFrum
Our offseason Four Downs series ends with a look at the NFC West's biggest remaining holes and their most notable UDFA signings. The Rams and 49ers have to kick-start their passing games, Arizona's offense lacks a big dimension, and the Seahawks continue to rely on Russell Wilson's magic tricks.