I suppose former USC defensive lineman Armond Armstead would have a problem with being associated with USC in the headline and in this sentence since he is suing them for allegedly causing the heart attack that caused him to miss the 2011 season and go undrafted in the 2012 draft. But that’s what happened and he DID play there for three seasons.
Armstead played the 2012 season for the Toronto Argonauts and helped them win the Grey Cup (which is inexplicably cooler-looking than the Lombardi Trophy), posting six sacks. He is now in contact with several NFL teams and will most likely sign with one of them once the playoffs are over.
A contract would end a long journey for Armstead, who is otherwise a stud defensive lineman.
His suit against USC stems from his allegation that team doctor’s prescribed him painkillers that caused him to have a heart attack. The same USC doctors would not clear him for the 2011 season following the incident. It is that decision, more than anything else, that seems to be the impetus for the lawsuit. The Armstead family never reported any issues with coaches or the program in general, just with team doctors who would not clear him. Heart attacks are not one of the listed possible side effects of the painkiller Armstead was prescribed.
USC team doctors also have a history of being very careful with serious injuries. They would not clear linebacker Jarvis Jones for the 2010 season after he suffered a neck injury during the 2009 season. Jones then transferred to Georgia and will most likely be a first round pick in the 2013 NFL Draft.
Some say this lawsuit against USC is nothing more than a public relations move for the benefit of NFL teams that may want to sign Armstead. If he can make it seem like his heart issues were not due to a chronic condition or any serious issues, then he’s much more likely to be signed. NFL teams are not keen on signing guys who may die during training camp.
That said, there’s no reason team doctors can’t take a look at Armstead before signing him. And if he IS cleared to play by NFL team doctors, then whatever NFL team that is would gain an outstanding defensive lineman who would probably have been a first round pick like his USC teammate Nick Perry.