Georgia LB Jarvis Jones is considered one of the best playmakers available in next month’s NFL Draft, but there have been concerns raised about a neck condition he suffers from called spinal stenosis.
It appears some of those apprehensions regarding his condition might have been initially overblown, according to a report on NationalFootballPost.com.
Jones was diagnosed with stenosis, a narrowing of the spinal column, after suffering a neck injury as a freshman at Southern California. USC doctors would not clear him to return to action, which prompted his transfer to Georgia. He never had an issue with his neck while at Georgia and led the nation with 14.5 sacks last year as a junior.
“I have a slight narrowing in my spine between the C4 and C5 (vertebraes),” Jones told members of the media at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis last month.
“Like pretty much everybody – probably some of you all have spinal stenosis and don’t know it – I have it. But most of the doctors checked me out and feel that I’m fine. I don’t have any contusion or anything like that in it.”
In a medical report that was sent to NFL teams, a leading orthopedist, Craig Brigham, refutes that Jones never had a significant spinal cord contusion, according to the NationalFootballPost.com article.
Brigham concluded that Jones either had a very mild incident of spinal cord contusion or merely a stinger that has long since resolved. He concluded that Jones is cleared to play without restriction.
Jones could be an option for the Lions with the No. 5-overall pick if they feel comfortable with their medical evaluations.
“I don’t know, in Jarvis Jones’ case, he was playing some pretty good ball out there and the neck looked fine to me,” Detroit Lions general manager Martin Mayhew said at the combine.
The team recently signed outside linebacker DeAndre Levy to a multi-year deal and have middle linebacker Stephen Tulloch signed through 2016, but Justin Durant – Detroit’s other starter on the outside – is set to become an unrestricted free agent Tuesday at 4 p.m. ET.
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