The reported disclosure from Texans defensive end Jadeveon Clowney that he played through a sports hernia in 2013 raises a potential treasure trove for the dead spot on the NFL calendar.
The Texans currently face plenty of questions and criticism regarding whether they knew or should have known about the hernia. Given the apparent intricacy and specificity and incongruity (I know that doesn’t fit — I just couldn’t think of a third word that ended with “y”) of the pre-draft process, it seems like teams would, could, and should know whether a guy has a condition for which he ultimately needs surgery.
In Clowney’s case, the Texans have claimed that the injury arose after the draft. Which means that, if Clowney had the hernia in 2013, they missed it during the pre-draft process. Aiding the Texans’ position is that at least two other teams that picked in the top 10 didn’t know about Clowney’s hernia. Hurting the Texans’ position is that at least one other team knew there was a groin issue that may require hernia surgery.
For the Texans, the question becomes far more relevant because they, you know, drafted Clowney. And that he needed surgery. Complicating the situation for the Texans is that, as Nick Wright of SportsRadio 610 in Houston reminded me on the air earlier today, the move comes a year after the Texans signed safety Ed Reed to a contract that gave him $5 million guaranteed at a time when Reed had a hip problem that the Texans failed to detect during his physical.
Regardless of whether the Texans didn’t know whether Clowney had a hernia, they knew he had a groin issue. And that put them on notice that perhaps more work should be done. And the Texans apparently didn’t.