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New York Jets cornerback Dee Milliner turns to yoga to avoid injuries and save NFL career

Former Alabama cornerback Dee Milliner (No. 28) defending a Tennessee WR in 2011: Cedric Mason- TDAL Magazine

It’s known for spiritual healing and relieving stress, but can yoga alleviate injuries?

New York Jets cornerback DeMarcus “Dee” Milliner is about to test this theory, as the injury-prone player turns to yoga to save his NFL career. He was taken by the Jets in the first round of the 2013 NFL Draft and despite a good rookie season (56 tackles, three interceptions), medical issues have limited Milliner to just 21 games in three years. He intends to also improve his eating habits while doing yoga, according to Jets’ beat writer Dom Cosentino of New Jersey.com.

Milliner’s injuries range from ankle sprains to a torn Achilles, leaving the Jets with no choice but to decline the fifth-year option on his rookie contract. He’s had multiple surgeries dating back to his time at Alabama (2010-12), where was an All-American defender and two-time national champion.

Milliner recorded 133 total tackles, 34 pass breakups and five interceptions during his three seasons at Alabama. He would be a finalist for both Bronko Nagurski and Jim Thorpe awards as a junior.

Prior to Alabama, Milliner attended Stanhope Elmore High School (Millbrook, Ala.). He was a standout player in both football and track, posting a five-star rating from multiple recruiting sites.

New York has star power in its secondary with Darrelle Revis and Calvin Pryor, but a healthy Milliner gives it more playmaking abilities and range to deal with physical wide receivers.

Milliner enters his fourth NFL season this fall.

Stephen M. Smith is a senior analyst and columnist for Touchdown Alabama Magazine. You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @Smsmith_TDALMag.

Stephen Smith is a 2015 graduate of the University of Alabama. He is a senior writer and reporter for Touchdown Alabama Magazine. He has covered Alabama football for 10+ years and his knowledge and coverage of the Crimson Tide's program have made him among the most respected journalist in his field. Smith has been featured on ESPN and several other marquee outlets as an analyst.

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