On one of the most important days of Maurice Hurst’s career path, he got some very bad news. At the NFL Combine, Hurst red-flagged for a heart condition during his medical exam and was not allowed to participate in the week’s events. He was expected to solidify his status as one of the most athletic defensive tackles in this year’s class. The news not only threatened to plummet his draft stock, but it was possibly career-threatening.
However, it has only been good news since that day. Hurst was cleared to participate in full during Michigan’s Pro Day a few weeks ago, and his performance was pretty impressive.
From start to finish, @mohurstjr put together an impressive performance at today's Pro Day. #ProBlue pic.twitter.com/Tuno4hoUKX— Michigan Football (@UMichFootball) March 23, 2018
Well, it appears the good news will continue for one of the top defensive tackle prospects in the draft. According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, the NFL Combine did not ask Hurst to come back to Indianapolis for a medical recheck:
NFL Combine rechecks are next Thursday and Friday, and #Michigan DL Maurice Hurst (heart issue) was not requested back for it. A good sign. Doesn’t mean he’ll be cleared by every team. But at the least, it’s a good sign for the player who was able to do his school’s pro day.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) April 6, 2018
Medical rechecks are typically done when NFL teams request a follow-up on a concerning medical issue with a prospect. Last year, linebacker Reuben Foster was medically rechecked because of shoulder surgery he underwent in the offseason (the invitation back would have happened even if Foster wasn’t kicked out of the original NFL Combine).
So this is a great sign for Hurst that teams are comfortable with his current prognosis after his clean bill of health at Michigan’s Pro Day. Though, as Rapoport notes, this does not mean every team is comfortable with where he’s at. During private visits, teams can administer their own medical examinations with their own doctors.
Still, the fact that he wasn’t even invited to come back to recheck at the Combine means it’s unlikely Hurst’s draft stock will be significantly impacted by the medical hiccup last month.
The Detroit Lions are definitely one of many teams that may be interested in Hurst in the first round of the draft, seeing as they have a huge need for a pass-rushing interior defender. We’ll see if the Lions, or any other team, is comfortable enough with Hurst to take him in the first round later this month.