One of the red flags on Georgia linebacker Jarvis Jones’ draft stock was of health concerns about his neck. Those concerns are disappearing quickly.
Jarvis Jones left the University of Southern California in 2009 because he was diagnosed with spinal stenosis. USC never played him and he transferred to the University of Georgia.
He then went on to blow up the SEC, leading the nation in sacks (14.5), tackles for loss (24.5), and forced fumbles (seven). The only reason he was not a top 10 draft pick was because of his 2009 diagnosis of spinal stenosis.
Jones has contended that he was misdiagnosed at USC, a position now being endorsed by Dr. Craig Brigham, a leading orthopedist at OrthoCarolina.
Brigham sent a report to NFL teams which said his condition was,
either a very mild incident of spinal cord concussion or merely a stinger that has long since resolved. Jarvis is cleared to play without restriction.
Brigham also surmised that even if Jones re-injured himself in the same area it would not necessarily be a career ending injury. This is great news for fans of the linebacker, but not necessarily news to NFL teams.
Jones had a great combine and spoke with teams that were very understanding of his situation. He believes he is simply another example of the pre-draft disinformation process.
People were telling me teams do that because they want me to drop to them because they don’t have high picks. I can’t control none of that. I know what teams were telling and I know what doctors told me. So I just focus on what I can control, which is trying to be the best football player in America. – Jarvis Jones
Jones would be a great pickup for the New Orleans Saints, who have the 15th overall pick in the 2013 NFL Draft. This report just makes it that much tougher for Jones to drop that far.