Mark Andrews has had Type 1 diabetes since he was 9, so the Ravens rookie tight end knows by now how to manage the disease. But he also knows people will still wonder about it anyway.
During the pre-draft process, some NFL teams asked the former Oklahoma star about the condition, in which insulin-producing cells within the pancreas are gradually destroyed and fail to produce the hormone that helps the body’s cells convert glucose into energy. Andrews said after Friday’s rookie minicamp practice that it’s “not a problem — it’s just something I always have to be aware of.”
Andrews told Bleacher Report in 2015 that he had once experienced severe hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) as a true freshman, which required a teammate to help feed him sugary snacks while he lay unresponsive on his bed. Within the Sooners’ program, trainers helped him check his blood sugar during practices and games, and he said diabetes hasn't been a problem during his football career.
Ravens coach John Harbaugh said Saturday that Andrews’ condition never was mentioned during draft meetings.
“Maybe I wasn't paying attention,” he said, “but it wasn't something that factored into our consideration at all.”