Two serious, season-ending knee injuries in two years won't be enough to prevent South Carolina running back Marcus Lattimore from entering the 2013 NFL draft, according to a report from DraftInsider.net:
Insiders also tell me that its apparent Marcus Lattimore will also enter the draft despite the recent injury suffered by the South Carolina running back.
On October 27 against Tennessee, Lattimore suffered one of the most gruesome leg injuries you will ever see. His right leg got caught in between two defenders, and you could see when he rolled over that the lower portion of the leg was just dangling.
The injury came nearly one year to the day when Lattimore tore his ACL in a game against Mississippi State. He wasn't eligible to come out as a sophomore last season, so he had the chance to rehab and show scouts he was completely healthy in 2012 before making any decisions.
Now, after suffering two different leg injuries in two years, the time for Lattimore to declare was never going to be ideal. If he waited another year, assuming he is healthy enough to play in 2013, he risked another significant injury that would potentially ruin his draft stock entirely.
At least by possibly declaring for the 2013 draft, teams have a sample size of games this past season to judge him by and will be able to follow his medical progress all the way until the draft.
It will be interesting to see if a team decides to take a chance on Lattimore in the draft, if the report is accurate. The potential is there, but teams have gotten more conservative when it comes to drafting running backs.
Lattimore will be a sentimental favorite for everyone wherever he is drafted. A young athlete as talented as he is, you hope to see him come back from all the adversity he has had to deal with the last two years.