Let's recall the verbatim rumor/report by Schefter: "bone on bone
". The report wasn't that it would be bone on bone at some vague future point, it was claiming the status quo.
Also, please, read this
It's unknown how many teams had their doctors examine him on an individual basis but many of the reports that surfaced claimed to be based on a medical recheck performed at the Indianapolis Scouting Combine. The problem with those reports is that Ajayi did not attend any medical rechecks at the combine. Ajayi's agent, Erik Burkhardt, confirmed via Twitter that he did not and was never even asked to attend the recheck. Some reports claimed that this information had been going around the NFL but what is known is that teams tend to not share medical information obtained from a player in any way even off the record. It seems unlikely that too many GM's would be out there spreading confidential medical information about a player even "off the record" but its not unlikely that some rumor spreading may have otherwise occurred during the season of "misinformation" in the NFL.
So, Mr. Giles, the evidence (proof?) that the rumor was either grossly exaggerated or outright fabricated lies simply with the fact that Jay Ajayi is not in any shape, form, or fashion moving like a man with no cartilage in his knee. And hasn't been for half a decade now since the injury that supposedly caused the issue. Which was exactly 900 collegiate and pro touches ago.
Isn't it that simple? Shouldn't
it be that simple? Let's do some critical-thinking, some logical inference: if the knee was degenerating all this time, how plausible is it that the most recent 54 of those 900 touches since the injury occurred would result in 400+ rushing yards vs the pinnacle of football competition, displaying a player at the evident peak of his athletic prowess to date? Where is the supposed degeneration evidenced here? Does he look like he's losing a step compared to his Boise tape? No, if anything, he looks a bit quicker. Is he routinely, mysteriously limited in practice, or taking suspicious 'rest days'? No.
Shouldn't speculation and rumor cease to be very believable when the visible reality comes out and plainly contradicts it?
Isn't this common sense?
At some point, one has no other reasonable option but to conclude that the fire he's searching for apparently doesn't exist since he can't find actual smoke anywhere.
As for Ajayi's drop to the 5th, i.e. "32 teams passing on him that long must prove everything", you are not considering, at all, important context here. 1.)
Last year's class was famously deep with primo RB prospects, so the teams with the most need at the position had plenty of other great options to choose from. So even if they knew the rumor was dubious, why take the risk if the next guy up on their board was also graded for Day 2 and only behind Ajayi by a trivial margin? 2.)
RB is an increasingly devalued position among NFL front-offices, as it's become seen as very replaceable production. So it doesn't take much to drop an RB these days down the board, in other words. Like, say, one vague rumor about a problem with his knee. 3.)
If you think about it, It's actually a vote of confidence in Ajayi that he was still drafted in the 5th round. Consider how guys like Booker and Dixon this year also went on Day 3, and they
didn't have any degenerative knee rumor!
"I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit. It’s the only way to be sure."
- Sun Tzu, 469 BCE