Big College Star Is Injured, Reaction Speaks Volumes

Maybe 'someone should’ve checked on him' before moving to next drill, observer writes of David Ojabo
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 21, 2022 9:03 AM CDT
Reaction to His Injury May Say Something About Football
Michigan defensive lineman David Ojabo catches a pass during a drill at the NFL football scouting combine on March 5 in Indianapolis. His injury happened at a different event last week.   (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

(Newser) – The injury itself was big news in the football world: Star Michigan linebacker David Ojabo went down with a torn Achilles while auditioning in front of NFL scouts on Friday, reports Yahoo Sports. Ojabo was expected to be a top-10 pick in the next NFL draft, but the injury might drop him 20 spots or more depending on his recovery, one NFL scouting director tells the outlet. However, another aspect of the injury also is causing headlines. Bucky Brooks of NFL Media, a former NFL player, tweeted a video of Ojabo falling to the turf in pain—and being helped by exactly nobody, at least in the immediate aftermath.

“I know the NFL is a cold business but watching the lack of concern or empathy from the scouts, coaches and observers following David Ojabo’s injury bugs me,” Brooks wrote. “Perhaps someone should’ve checked on him instead of grabbing the ball and moving to the next drill. Just a thought.” At Pro Football Talk, Mike Florio agrees. Players are treated like machine parts, and the reaction to Ojabo's injury is a perfect example: "Scrape him up, move him out, and let’s get back to screening new parts for our impressive football machines." The NFL likes to use the phrase "football is family," adds Florio, "but football is business," pure and simple.

Achilles injuries can be notoriously troublesome over the long term, and the moment illustrates the "tenuous" fate of pro-wannabes, writes Rainer Sabin at the Detroit Free Press. “I mean you have to sit there questioning, ‘How did this happen? Why did this happen?” says Michigan lineman Andrew Stueber. “He’s done those drills plenty of times and it’s never happened. It’s a freak injury, freak accident.” Ojabo himself has a more defiant take: “I’ll be back,” he told the Free Press. “You can print that in your article.” (Read more football stories.)

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