Making a National Football League (NFL) team is tough; making one after undergoing an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction is tougher. NFL Combine participants who are post-ACL reconstruction, particularly with certain graft types such as allografts and to a lesser extent hamstring grafts, are frequently ‘down-graded’ despite the presence of a stable, well-placed graft without any associated meniscal or chondral damage. Whether NFL general managers are truly prescient in accurately predicting decreased performance by choosing a player later in the draft, or whether NFL coaching staffs knowingly or unknowingly restrict an athlete's playing time based on draft position or surgical history is unknown. Yet, any collegiate football player who is good enough to make it to the Combine possesses a rare combination of athleticism, strength, determination, and toughness. An ACL tear used to mark the beginning of the end of an athlete's playing career, but today's athletes are able to return at an elite level following ACL injury and surgery. Unfortunately, despite a successful surgery, prospective NFL players who undergo ACL reconstruction may still be at a disadvantage compared to their uninjured counterparts in terms of their ability to be drafted and play in the first two years of their careers.
|Number of pages||3|
|Journal||Arthroscopy - Journal of Arthroscopic and Related Surgery|
|State||Published - Aug 2018|