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Packers Have Avoided Drafting Players With Injuries

This article at Pro Football Talk about the serious hamstring injury suffered by TE Kyle Rudolph made me think about the Green Bay Packers tolerance for drafting injured players. Rudolph was recently taken in the 2nd round by the Minnesota Vikings, but he might have gone higher if he hadn't been hurt last season. And his injured hamstring might be a problem for the rest of his career.

Rudolph's injury was well known, but no player had a bigger injury cloud in the draft then Clemson DE Da'Quan Bowers. He went from being mentioned as the first overall selection, to the Buccaneers in the 2nd round. And I'm not convinced they should have drafted him when they did. According to Bucs Nation, there is a chance he's done already, making him the next DE Jamal Reynolds.

On the other hand, the Packers haven't taken on an significant injury risk since the ill advised selection of DE Justin Harrell in 2007. No other Packers draftee I can think of since then has entered the NFL coming off a season ending injury in college. The ability to stay healthy, and remain available for games and practices, is a valuable asset too. And I'm growing to appreciate their seemingly cautious approach over the past four drafts.