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Billy Price hoping pec injury doesn’t affect draft stock

Ohio State v Penn State

STATE COLLEGE, PA - OCTOBER 25: Billy Price #54 of the Ohio State Buckeyes blocks during the game against the Penn State Nittany Lions on October 25, 2014 at Beaver Stadium in State College, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

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Center Billy Price’s worst injury at Ohio State was an MCL sprain that didn’t even keep him out of practice. He set the school record for most consecutive starts with 55.

“That’s the irony behind it, I guess, and everybody’s making a headline out of it right now,” Price said. “Things happen. It’s football. You’re playing a very dangerous game. You’re training at a very high level, and everything you’re putting your body through to be the best and most prepared here at the combine, to be able to compete with your peers and to compete with the best centers in this class, the best guards in this class. It sucks. It did. Again, that was something I watched [Notre Dame guard] Quenton Nelson rip out 35, and I looked around and said, ‘OK, let’s go get this thing. Let’s go push the limit.’ Got in there felt great. Just something happens. It’s part of it.”

Seeking reps in the 30s on the bench press, Price said “something didn’t feel right” after three. An MRI diagnosed an “incomplete” pectoral tear. He will get a second opinion in the next few days. Surgery is not out of the question, he said, which would require a four-month rehab.

But it’s better news than it could have been as he will return in time for training camp.

“It’s a huge relief,” Price said. “You see guys completely tear their pec.”

Some draft analysts project Price as a first-round draft choice. He likely won’t get to workout for scouts before the draft, but he hopes that won’t affect his draft stock.

“I’m not for sure [if it will affect his draft status],” Price said. “I’ve talked to a couple of people, talked to my agents. Playing 55 games at Ohio State, the resume and the body of work is there. I have a great relationship with the strength staff back at Ohio State if anybody were to ask, ‘Hey, can this kid run? Can this kid move?’ They have all the numbers. They have all the metrics for that. . . . This is a situation we’re just excited for whatever’s going to come next.”