Alabama running back Mark Ingram, the 2009 Heisman winner, recently has been the subject of rumors that his knee is knocking him off draft boards.
Ingram says it’s not true.
“I don’t know where the reports have come from,” Ingram told the Associated Press following the announcement that he’ll be on the cover of the new EA college football game. “I guess somebody wants me to fall down the board. But my knee is 100 percent. It’s strong, it’s healthy. All the teams have positive reports on my knee and Dr. [James] Andrews has given positive reports on my knee as well. My knee’s 100 percent. It’s in great shape. All those reports are false information.”
Ingram’s comments come in response to this recent observation from Mike Lombardi of NFL Network: “I’ve had two teams tell me the knee is very bad. He won’t be on their boards. These are teams that need running backs.”
But there’s no reason for teams that don’t want Ingram to say so, especially if they need running backs. Those teams should be telling Lombardi and anyone else who’ll listen that they love Ingram, that they adore Ingram, that his knee is “110 percent,” and that they’ll take him if he’s on the board.
The last thing those teams should want is another team that needs a running back developing that concern and then taking another running back before the teams that don’t want Ingram but need running backs can get a crack at the other running back.
And here’s the bottom line. If Ingram’s knee were “very bad,” he presumably would have been asked to return to Indianapolis for the medical recheck. He wasn’t. So this looks like a fairly obvious smokescreen, aimed at ensuring Ingram will be there when the teams supposedly concerned about his knee are making their first-round picks.