NFL News: Justin Blackmon Surgery, Combine Academics & Jairus Byrd Contract


Feb 02, 2013; New Orleans, LA USA; Rashad Thornton Sr., of New Orleans, jumps into the air at the Under Armour scouting combine area inside the NFL Experience, pro football

The NFL scouting combine is often an important event in helping evaluate draft prospects, but the league is considering restricting college players declared academically ineligible from the event, according to CBS Sports’ Bruce Feldman.

The NFL is considering the rule “because of the increased scrutiny on the maturity and commitment of the prospects entering the NFL.” This is an attempt by the NFL to assist the NCAA to help strengthen academic commitment from student athletes, and prevent them from using college as a means of passing the time before they get to the league.

Still, potential NFL prospects shouldn’t be forced to care about school. They’re football players, and the NFL is a job specifically made for them.

If they can’t pass History 101 or Geography, that doesn’t hinder their God-given abilities that can help make a living for themselves, as well as their families

The deadline for NFL clubs to reach long-term agreements with franchised players is this Friday, and there has been no recent progress in the contract dispute between the Buffalo Bills and unsigned franchise player Jairus Byrd, who is regarded as one of the best safeties in the league.

Buffalo placed a one-year franchise tag on Byrd in March, and he’s since has held out of organized team activities, minicamp and has given no indication that he’ll sign his tender. Both sides have until July 15 to work out a long-term extension or Byrd must play with the franchise tag, which is valued at $6.9 million.

It’s been a tough offseason for Jacksonville Jaguars receiver Justin Blackmon, who was earlier suspended for the first four games this season, and just recently underwent groin surgery. His availability for the start of training camp is unknown, and he needs to get off to a fast start when he does return to impress the new coaching staff if he wants to remain in the team’s long-term plans.

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