Star Lotulelei Injury Report: Final Prognosis for Utah DL’s Pro Career

Will Carroll is taking a look at the top draft picks in the 2013 NFL draft with any medical questions. Carroll takes a look at the full spectrum of info, including injury history and exclusive medical insight from Dr. Neal ElAttrache.


Star Lotulelei: 6'3" 311-pound, defensive lineman from Utah


Injury History

Lotulelei has no significant injury history aside from a heart issue flagged at the NFL combine. Testing showed a reduced efficiency of his heart. The ejection fraction for Lotulelei was at 44 percent versus a low-normal reading of about 60 percent. (I had a heart attack in early March and my percentage was never lower than 55 percent immediately following.) 

Lotulelei was precluded from doing any of the physical activities at the combine, and worry that he had an enlarged heart or another serious heart condition had him dropping on mock drafts. Teams were a bit more sanguine while they awaited additional testing. Those tests, including extensive imaging including cardiac MRI and a 48-hour halter study, showed no problems. The most likely culprit for Lotulelei's initial abnormal result is a viral infection or rapid weight loss. 

Lotulelei was issued a gold star by his cardiologist that includes no restrictions from activity. Lotulelei was not required to return for the medical re-check, a surprising move that speaks to the completeness of his medical file post-combine. 


Combine/Pro Day

Lotulelei was precluded from participating in the performance portion of the combine after his abnormal tests. He did participate in Utah's Pro Day after being cleared. Lotulelei was slow, even for a player of his size, but many discounted the numbers due to an extended period off while his heart was being checked and re-checked. His power is unquestioned, putting up 38 reps in the bench. He also had several team ...

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