Atlanta Falcons: 5 Non-NFC South stars to account for in 2017

ORCHARD PARK, NY - DECEMBER 24: Jay Ajayi (Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images)
ORCHARD PARK, NY - DECEMBER 24: Jay Ajayi (Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images) /
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Running Back. Miami Dolphins. Jay Ajayi. 4. player. 59.

Running back Jay Ajayi was a complete monster at Boise State. After rushing just 82 times as a freshman, Ajayi became a work horse the next two seasons. As a sophomore he took the handoff 249 times for 1,425 yards and found pay dirt 18 times on the ground — he also added another touchdown and 222 yards through the air. His junior season was even better as the bell cow carried it 347 times for 1,823 yards and an unbelievable 28 touchdowns. He also saw his receptions go to a career high of 50 for 535 yards and four more touchdowns.

Then teams just refused to draft him. It made no sense whatsoever as Ajayi was a production machine in college. Yet an apparent knee problem led him to fall to Round 5. The Dolphins finally drafted him, as they seemed to be the only ones smart enough to realize you still get the player once he’s healthy (crazy idea isn’t it? Sounds kinda like everyone passing on defensive end Takkarist McKinley due to shoulder issues).

Sure enough as a rookie Ajayi missed time, but in his second season he went ballistic. The London-born back went for over two hundred yards three times, including his first two starts for the Dolphins. He finished fourth in the league with 1,272 yards despite starting just 12 games.

In their Week 5 matchup with the Dolphins, the Falcons have to keep their attention focused on Ajayi. He can destroy a defense in no time at all.