Dee Milliner is well on his way to being a top-five or top-10 pick at worst in the 2013 NFL draft thanks to a great showing at the combine, so nobody should be concerned that impending shoulder surgery will affect his draft stock at all.
According to Kareem Copeland of NFL.com, "Milliner says he'll have surgery to repair a torn labrum in his right shoulder March 12. He expects a two-month recovery period."
While this might have been a cause for concern early on for Milliner's hopes of remaining a top pick in the first round, the Alabama product still went on to the combine and impressed.
In the 40-yard dash, he posted a time of 4.37, which was second among defensive backs in this year's class. In the rest of the drills, Milliner posted marks that put him in the middle of the pack or better and certainly proved he has the athleticism to be a top cornerback in this year's class.
Unfortunately for Milliner, he wasn't able to bench press due to his injury, but that isn't a necessity for this talented corner and won't hurt his draft stock a lick.
Milliner's prioritizing of the combine was huge for his future position in the first round and showed he is very much dedicated to his NFL career. Not to mention the toughness it displays that he was able to overcome his injury to still perform up to standards.
Here is what Milliner had to say about putting off his surgery and making it to the combine, per Copeland:
"I felt the need that I had to come out and do something," Milliner said Sunday. "I ain't just want to sit out the combine and pro day and you guys start wondering, saying this and that.
"I just wanted at least to come out and showcase that I can still move around, I can run and I can swing my arm around."
And he did just that.
Had Milliner skipped the combine, questions would have arisen about his viability and his stock would not be as favorable as it is now. Furthermore, it would have given another cornerback in the class an opportunity to supplant after a no-show.
The combine erased any chance of that.
The only thing remaining for Milliner is to get back in time so he can participate in training camp, and that shouldn't be a problem based on the date given for his surgery.
According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, one of Milliner's representatives said he should be more than ready to go by the time training camps come around in July:
"The doctors have informed us that he will be 100 percent and fully recovered in time for training camp in July," said Tony Fleming, one of Milliner's reps with Impact Sports. "We will be providing all NFL clubs information prior to surgery and updates close to the draft."
That is big for Milliner because now he doesn't have to worry about missing any important time with whatever team that drafts him in April, and teams don't have to be wary about Milliner potentially coming aboard late, thus making it more difficult for him to get situated in his new home.
So, Milliner has answered whatever questions remained about his athleticism and he'll be fully healed by the time training camp rolls around. That means there are little to no concerns moving forward in regard to Milliner's NFL future, and that will guarantee his stock value will land him very early in the first round.
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