LSU cornerback Morris Claiborne dazzled NFL scouts at his Pro Day earlier this week, impressing in both position drills and improving his 40 time from his combine performance, with one scout clocking him at 4.39. seconds.
Somewhat lost in the shuffle of his stellar performance was the little tidbit that Claiborne will have surgery prior to the draft to repair a torn ligament in his wrist. That sentence features quite a few words that trigger red flags for NFL war rooms, which has caused some to believe that Claiborne could see his stock drop, even drastically enough to keep him out of the top five picks of the first round.
We here at TDR are not among those people.
It turns out that Claiborne injured the wrist in the Tigers’ 9-6 overtime victory over Alabama in November, and played through the rest of the season. Combine that (including the toughness showed by his ability to stay on the field) with the fact that this particular procedure is said to be rather minor as athletic surgeries go, and you’ve got a recipe for a weak argument for keeping the draft’s top cover man out of the top five selections.
Claiborne is head and shoulders above the rest of the cornerback class in this draft. Don’t expect this non-story to keep the All-American defender from falling past the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at #5 overall.