Limitations will not define Shaquem Griffin

Given his circumstances, Shaquem Griffin has no business playing football. When he was four years old, he had his left hand amputated due to complications from Amniotic Band Sydrome). The result of this surgery could have took him down and had him dreading on things in his life. Instead, he does not allow the amputation define who he is.

After being a big part of the University of Central Florida going undefeated, the senior linebacker was not talked about much going as being an NFL linebacker. Plenty did not think it was a consideration considering he was playing with one hand. Well, after a very solid performance in the Senior Bowl, he received an invite to the NFL combine in Indianapolis, Indiana. From there, he the show was just beginning. Griffin showed off his speed, running a 4.38 in the 40-yard dash. Along with that amazingly fast 40 for a linebacker, Griffin was able to bench press 225 twenty times. For a guy that everyone had limited expectations for, he by far exceeded those. Now instead of a guy plenty wondered about in terms of getting drafted, Griffin has positioned himself as a guy who will get drafted. He showed the speed, quickness and desire to do whatever he wanted when he wanted to do it.

Sure, he did not have pads on and it was not live action, but what he has done is taking what was a perceived negative and turned it into a positive for him. By his own admission, he likes to take the things people say he cannot do and do them better than they ever thought he could. He surely quelled a lot of doubters this weekend and there is no doubt in my mind Griffin will be playing on Sundays this upcoming season. Sure, he will see some things he has not seen in college and he will be asked to do some things he has never attempted to do, but that doesn't mean he is going to let up at all. In fact, he might push a little harder. Betting against him has not turned out well for many over his career and I would not expect it will start turning out well now.

Griffin went from likely undrafted to a guy that will more than likely be drafted within the first two days. A lot of that was within the abilities we could see like his quickness, strength and speed. The other things that we could not see like his refusal to succumb to his limitations are what took him over the top though. Griffin is a beast of a linebacker, so forget about his missing hand because he sure has and so have some scouts that have been evaluating him. In fact, many are wondering why they even began to doubt him to begin with. After all, he has made it this far doing what he has done.

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1 Response

  1. I watched some film on smith he can”t handle big bodies at the point of attack. I watched him get washed out every time by guys who have no business playing on sundays. His go to move when they run right at him is to give a ton of ground and try to get around the blocker. Bigger, more athletic NFL lineman, backs and tightends are going to cream this kid and his back up and go around approach isn”t going to work. He does have the speed. He also has the quickness and balance to avoid blocks in space (against college wideouts and running backs- smaller guys, red flag) he was around almost every play. I did see him rush the A gap, which has been touted as a strength of his. I think he gets a lot of credit for the other guys on the team drawing doubles. The only times I saw him get home was when the HB had to try to block him one on one. If there”s a common negative trait in young running backs it”s that they don”t know how to pick up the blitz and, again, these are smaller guys than he”ll be facing at the next level. Size+upside+youth+experience-downside=Edmunds Neither is a perfect scheme fit, I”m hoping we fill holes in FA and Edmunds is my Vote for BPA

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