Rosen remains in concussion protocol and has not yet been cleared to play.
UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen, who is projected to be a an early first-round pick should he enter the NFL draft, remains in concussion protocol and will sit out Tuesday's Cactus Bowl against Kansas State per doctor's orders, reports SI.com's Bruce Feldman.
But at a press conference on Saturday, the junior explained why he wanted to suit up with his team, even as a number of other top draft prospects have voluntarily skipped their bowl games in recent years.
Today UCLA QB Josh Rosen said he would look at the NFL after the bowl game and when asked about what makes him want to play in the @Cactus_Bowl when other high profile players have skipped bowl games... he had this great answer. #UCLA #CactusBowl pic.twitter.com/fArs2leCix— Chris Lilly KAKE News (@Chris_LillyTV) December 24, 2017
Rosen contrasted his situation, as a quarterback who doesn't take the physical punishment that other positions do, with that of recent players who skipped the bowl game, like running backs Christian McCaffrey and Leonard Fournette.
"For them it's not an issue of if they're getting hurt, it's an issue of how severe, because most of those guys get banged up to some extent every single game. Quarterback is unique, we'll take a few licks here and there, but nothing like the beating those guys take.
"A lot of people bash them, but some of them have to realize that some of these guys have families, some of these guys have kids. Some of these guys really have to support the people around them. Some of them maybe have been put in unfortunate circumstances where they can't afford to be in school for another year. They might want to...If they feel like they've locked in their future earnings to take care of their kids, or families, sisters, brothers, whatever, then I think people should really look into their story and see how football is affecting their life."
Rosen's self-aware explanation has been widely praised across social media.
Rosen, who is from the affluent Manhattan Beach neighborhood near Los Angeles, suffered his second concussion of the season in UCLA's season-ending victory over California. He has thrown for 3,756 yards, 26 touchdowns and 10 interceptions this season. Should he declare for the draft, he could well be the first quarterback selected.