More than a month after doctors sent Michigan defensive lineman Maurice Hurst home from the Scouting Combine due to a heart condition, the doctors don’t need to see him again.
Via Ian Rapoport of NFL Media, Hurst wasn’t asked to return to Indianapolis for the medical re-check. Given the fact that the powers-that-be prevented him from working out little over a month ago, the decision not to take a second look at him seems odd, on the surface.
As explained by a source with knowledge of the process, it isn’t. The re-check happens only when further imaging or examination is deemed useful to the process. If, for example, a player had surgery not long before the Combine, doctors will want to inspect the healing of the surgical scar. If a player was recovering from a broken bone, doctors will want a fresh X-ray.
For Hurst, there’s no new information to obtain. Doctors flagged the heart problem and prevented him from working out at the Scouting Combine. He later received separate clearance to participate in the Michigan Pro Day.
It’s not uncommon, either as to internal or orthopedic issues, for players to be prevented from working out in Indianapolis. Given that the Combine workouts are lower on the list of priorities than medical examinations or interviews, the folks in charge of the Combine will err on the side of caution when it comes to potentially letting an overly-competitive player assume a risk that, objectively speaking, is unnecessary.
For heart problems, there’s a separate component to the decision to keep players from working out. If the worst-case scenario happens at a time when doctors know or should know there’s a problem, there could be moral, and legal, responsibility.
As the source explained it, one specific orthopedic issue has become a more common cause of players being kept from working out. If doctors notice any type of swelling in and around the fifth metatarsal, the doctors will encourage the player to take some time off, and to work out at his Pro Day instead.
Ultimately, then, Hurst’s status comes down to a given team’s comfort level. The absence of a re-check ultimately means nothing as it relates to the issue that kept the Combine from letting him work out.