YardBarker- According to a report by Mike DiRocco of ESPN, Hurns was diagnosed with an allergy to grass when he was in high school. The diagnosis stemmed from a skin test performed after it was determined that Hurns was allergic to seafood.
The symptoms Hurns suffers range from skin rashes on his arms, legs and neck that vary in degree, per DiRocco. On some occasions the breakouts are so bothersome that Hurns has to take Benadryl following practice. Other times, his symptoms are practically non-existent.
To protect his body as best as possible from skin irritation, Hurns typically wears long sleeves and tights to cover his arms and legs. Obviously, that could be uncomfortable in itself considering the team practices under the hot, sunny Florida skies.
It also doesn’t help that the Jaguars’ home field is natural grass, as was the field he played on in college at the University of Miami. Per the report, Hurns fortunately doesn’t suffer with breathing or a runny nose due to his allergy.
“Sometimes I break out. Sometimes I don’t. At times it gets pretty aggravating, but for the most part it’s been holding up good.”
You always hear these stories about the hardships that professional athletes face along the way to becoming professional athletes. Growing up in rough communities, being the product of single family homes, battling injuries, disproving naysayers. Well let me be clear, making it to the NFL as someone that is allergic to grass is far and away the most impressive hill someone has climbed to reach the top of their profession. If I was Allen Hurns it wouldn't have taken more than one bad game for me to swear off football forever. The first time I came home after a 1 catch, 11 yard performance with my entire body feverishly itching I would have been talking to my high school track coach.
You know that feeling of using every ounce of your will to avoid scratching when you have a rash? It's enough to drive any sane man to scream uncontrollably. I'm not necessarily a violent person but if I was in the middle of an outbreak and someone walked by with Cortizone cream I would leave them looking like they were straight out of the opening scene of 'Saving Private Ryan'. There's simply nothing that takes more will power that knowingly subjecting yourself to an allergy. Allen Hurns has spent the entirety of his life playing football in Florida - of all places - and he's basically had to do so in a wetsuit just to partially avoid inevitable irritation. That speaks to his perseverance even more so than the fact that he went from going undrafted to becoming a 1,000 yard wide receiver. Truly a rashes-to-riches story if I have ever heard one. If there is someone out there that questioned his dedication to football along the way I certainly wouldn't want to see their after picture.