Troy Taormina/ USA Today

Texans Know Health Is Keeping Jadeveon Clowney From Being An Impact Player

Head Coach Bill O'Brien still likes what is ahead for the Texans' Jadeveon Clowney but health is key.

Health has no doubt been an issue for outside linebacker Jadeveon Clowney, two full seasons into his career with the Houston Texans, but coach Bill O’Brien is still upbeat on what the former number one overall pick can be. 

“Clowney’s got a great future,” said O’Brien from the NFL league meetings in Boca Raton, Florida. “His big thing, and I’ve said this all along is that he has to stay healthy, and we have to help him with that, then he’s got to do his part on that.”

Clowney suffered a torn meniscus in his first NFL game and that injury morphed into micro fracture surgery on his knee which limited him to only four games his rookie season. Add in a concussion and sports hernia surgery prior to training camp in 2014, it was a multitude of injuries that shut the linebacker down. 

In 2015, ahead of schedule following microfracture surgery, Clowney made his return to overcome the odds of a serious knee injury. Appearing in 13 games and being a force when healthy, Clowney showed he can impact games in a hurry. 

“He arrived in the league, he’s had several injuries, some of them not in his control,” continued O’Brien. “When he’s healthy, he’s able to get out there and practice and play, I mean he’s really played well for us. If you really study the tape, when he’s played for us, he’s had a big impact on games.” Clowney will have a full off-season to concentrate on getting ready for the football season instead of rehabbing an injury. His training will be more focused on handling the rigors of a NFL season, which will be a positive for Clowney who is entering an important third season. 

“The big thing’s going to be the consistency to be healthy, to be able to play a 16-game season,“ said O’Brien. “That’s a big thing for JD, but JD is a heck of a football player.”

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