South Carolina Gamecocks superstar DE Jadeveon Clowney is a nightmare matchup in every sense of the word, and the likely No. 1 2014 NFL Draft prospect is a magnet for attention. He’s received plenty of it recently after holding himself from this week’s SEC game against the Kentucky Wildcats, and he drew the ire of several fans and pundits for this questionable decision. Jadeveon Clowney is suffering from what is being termed as “bruised ribs”, and it was a big surprise to hear that he had held himself out of the game. This has led to further criticism that Clowney is simply going to mail in his final year at South Carolina in order to not suffer an injury before the draft.
In all honesty, it’s a smart decision from him, even if it is viewed by college football fans as a dishonorable one. Clowney has already shown all of his talent, tape, etc. to evaluators, and the only thing that could crush his value is a major injury. According to the USA Today’s Tom Pelissero, NFL executives are not concerned about Clowney’s decision to hold himself out of the Kentucky game.
One exec said to Pelissero, “Nah, no one will care. If he’s healthy, works out well and most importantly interviews well, it won’t hurt him.”
The other stated bluntly, “No one cares. He’s injured.”
The takeaways from the comments made by the two executives? NFL execs don’t seem to care that Jadeveon Clowney decided not to play in an effort to prioritize his health, and they are more concerned about his health going forward than anything else. If he mails in his junior season, then it’s college football fans who will be disappointing; not the men making decisions in the NFL. Gamecocks fans have a right to feel extremely frustrated, but there won’t be any negative pro ramifications for Clowney.