NFL Draft

Rapoport: ‘No Concerns’ About RB Najee Harris’ Ankle In Medical Rechecks

Najee Harris hurdle

With Alabama RB Najee Harris looking like the favorite to be picked by the Pittsburgh Steelers at #24 overall, it’s worth mentioning basically every piece of information on him that gets reported. We can offer some good news on his health. According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, the ankle injury he’s dealt with in the pre-draft process isn’t a concern going forward for teams.

That news isn’t much of a surprise. Harris’ ankle injury has prevented him from testing throughout the pre-draft process. We don’t have a 40 time, a vertical, or any agility drill times on him. And it doesn’t look like we will before the draft. But he was healthy enough to go through position-specific drills during Alabama’s second Pro Day. The Steelers sent RBs coach Eddie Faulkner to put him through some of those drills. Harris, just as he did in college, flashed good hands and the ability to function as a receiver, in addition to playing running back.

Harris was one of many players allowed to travel to Indianapolis for medical evaluation. The NFL didn’t hold a formal Combine this year, but allowed players dealing with injuries to be checked out by doctors so teams could have updated and accurate medical information, crucial pieces of the puzzle in the pre-draft process.

If Harris is there at #24, it’s hard to see the Steelers passing up on him. The question is if he’ll make it to that spot. The Miami Dolphins could grab him at #18 after not signing one of the top backs in free agency. Pittsburgh is showing every intention of taking a running back early two weeks from now. If not Harris, Clemson’s Travis Etienne, North Carolina’s Javonte Williams, and Ohio State’s Trey Sermon are other options. Etienne is probably the only other back they would consider at #24, however.

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