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Nick Bosa will not attempt to return to Ohio State this season, instead focusing on 2019 NFL Draft

Smart move for the potential No. 1 overall pick.

Big Ten Championship - Ohio State v Wisconsin Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Ohio State defensive end Nick Bosa, a strong candidate for the No. 1 overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft has decided to begin full-scale preparations for next April. Bosa suffered a core muscle injury in September and following surgery, he was expected to return in November. Instead of rehabbing for a return to face Michigan and compete for a national title, Bosa will not return to the university, according to The Columbus Dispatch’s Tim May.

May reported Bosa and his family decided to focus on the “next phase of his football career,” which will be playing on Sundays next fall. Bosa has a follow-up evaluation on his surgery in early November, but already met with Ohio state head coach Urban Meyer to inform him of his decision. The university confirmed the news Tuesday morning.

Bosa is currently projected to go No. 1 overall next April in the 2019 NFL Draft. Plenty can change between now and then, particularly given how the quarterback position can be quickly boosted in value during the draft process. However, barring any training injury between now and April, Bosa seems a lock to go no worse than top five.

I have no doubt there will be some columns between now and April excoriating Bosa for focusing on the draft, but I don’t blame him one bit. I have no problem with players skipping a bowl game, and given Bosa’s injury timeline, I see no value in returning for two or three more games to close out the season. If he returned and got hurt again and it impacted his draft stock, Ohio State would not be compensating him for it. He has to look out for No. 1, so good on him for focusing on what’s important.