Northwestern quarterback Clayton Thorson suffers knee injury in bowl game

Getty Images

Northwestern quarterback Clayton Thorson, an NFL prospect who has said he plans to play out his NCAA eligibility and enter the draft in 2019, suffered what looked like a serious knee injury today in the Music City Bowl against Kentucky.

The injury took place after Thorson caught a pass on a trick play. As Thorson ran down the field and attempted to evade a tackle, his knee buckled awkwardly. Kentucky linebacker Jordan Jones, the nearest defender on the play, looked particularly disturbed by what he saw and immediately signaled to the medical staff to come out for Thorson.

It was an ugly injury that could make a serious difference to Thorson’s NFL future. The best-case scenario is that he’s able to fully recover, have a good season for Northwestern in 2018 and get drafted in 2019 as he originally planned. But if this is the type of injury that could affect Thorson into next season, he could decide to turn pro now and see if some team will use a late-round pick on him and pay him to rehabilitate his knee at an NFL facility next year. He could also stay at Northwestern but have to sit out 2018 and apply for a medical redshirt to play in college in 2019, which would put his professional ambitions off to 2020.

As players with NFL ambitions increasingly decide to skip bowl games, injuries like Thorson’s make that an easy decision to understand.

23 responses to “Northwestern quarterback Clayton Thorson suffers knee injury in bowl game

  1. “As players with NFL ambitions increasingly decide to skip bowl games, injuries like Thorson’s make that an easy decision to understand.”

    Stop. It’s called football. His draft is more than a year away.

  2. Peoples Republic of PFT says:
    December 29, 2017 at 6:07 pm

    Note to self…audible out of stupid play.
    ———————-

    Big Ben probably should have done that also.

  3. Great now Thorson has his bowl watch and the trinket gift the payers get as
    Well as a surgical kneee.
    He will now have surgery and probably an earlier onset of arthritis.
    Just think, even if he doesn’t make the NFL if he needs follow up
    surgery for complications related to this injury …the NCAA and Northwestern will
    pay for it ….oh wait ..they won’t ? Yes, despite all the money the NCAA receives
    along with the School ….players are for the most part on their own for future
    surgery and medical treatment. But they did get that scholarship!
    This is why no one should ever second guess a player for opting out.

  4. I love college football. I hate these meaningless bowl games. If you’re not in the playoffs the games don’t even matter. Expand playoff field and get rid of these other games that are just used to make money.

  5. Thorson had no shot at an NFL career. This game was his last hope to catch the eye of somebody. Now he might get a sympathetic invitation to some team’s camp. So in reality, he’ll benefit from this injury. Sorry to be so crude sounding, but I’m just telling the truth.

  6. So many of you are ridiculously negative. Just like the people who criticize or make it sound like players should not play in bowl games. These same injuries could happen in practice, get a grip its called football and life, things happen to everyone!

  7. Crude? More like ignorant. Please let us know what NFL team do you work for to say he has/had not shot at making it to the NFL. Hopefully, this young man recovers and will be ready to go next fall and then enter the 2019 draft as originally planned.

  8. rutchaser says:
    December 29, 2017 at 7:01 pm
    I love college football. I hate these meaningless bowl games. If you’re not in the playoffs the games don’t even matter. Expand playoff field and get rid of these other games that are just used to make money.

    _____

    yea they kinda suck but it makes sense. teams outside the top 10 or so dont stand a chance in the playoffs and dont deserve a spot. So bowls gives them a shot to end their season with a win. And theres plenty of great bowl matchups. NW vs Kentucky is a good game and Lsu vs Notre Dame is gonna be great.

  9. Hate to see things like this happen to these kids. After putting their bodies on the line their entire life, while making millions of dollars for other people who don’t, just to get the opportunity to get a job earning a income doing what they have prepared for their entire lives.

  10. weird, i have seen more “non contact” knee injuries this year in pros and college. what gives? players too muscular/fast and ligaments cant keep up?..it sucks all around

  11. College football is gross on so many levels. Good for any young athlete who has the common sense to sit out meaningless bowl games. Playing for a national championship? Make the school that profits at least have the decency to pay for the appropriate amount of insurance for their players.

  12. Non draftable FA before the injury, which means he still has a chance to pursue an NFL career if he has the desire and if that doesn’t work out he was a rock star during his college years with a degree from NW. That is the American dream.

  13. It’s a simple question – what would you do if it was you or your kid. Of course you would sit out. Kirk Cousins was 3rd round pick and he’s going to make a $100 million. So it’s not where you start it’s where you finish. This guy has a strong arm and is obviously smart…but now he may never get a shot. He was playing great and maybe he comes out this year. But that’s done now.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!