Bronco Beat

Dolphins coach: former Boise State RB Jay Ajayi has separated himself from pack

Miami Dolphins running back Jay Ajayi during voluntary veterans minicamp on April 26 in Davie, Fla.
Miami Dolphins running back Jay Ajayi during voluntary veterans minicamp on April 26 in Davie, Fla.

Former Boise State running back Jay Ajayi is quickly becoming well worth his surprising fifth-round selection in last year’s NFL Draft.

Ajayi, who was solid as a backup last season with Miami Dolphins, has emerged as the front-runner to be the team’s No. 1 back this fall.

“(Ajayi’s) been one of those guys he’s been here every day, he’s done everything right,” Dolphins coach Adam Gase told 560 WQAM radio in Miami. “You can tell he’s looking to improve. He doesn’t say much, just keeps working. The rest of that group has done a good job to try and keep up with him, but obviously he’s kind of separated himself from that group as far as the consistency of what he does day in and day out.”

After missing the first eight weeks of his rookie campaign while on injured reserve in 2015, he had 49 carries for 187 yards and a touchdown, adding seven receptions for 90 yards. The 149th pick of the draft, Ajayi was the team’s second-leading rusher behind Lamar Miller, who signed with the Houston Texans in the offseason. Miami added a few free agents, but none of starting caliber, and drafted Alabama’s Kenyan Drake in the second round last month.

“He knows he’s the starter,” Gase said of Ajayi.


Last week, Boise State football coach Bryan Harsin spoke to the New York Giants’ website about two of the team’s new additions: former Bronco defensive backs Darian Thompson and Donte Deayon.

Thompson, a third-round pick, impressed quickly. ESPN suggested he could be an immediate starter at safety, quoting defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo as saying “Thompson, I thought, was barking things out. That’s the first thing I look for in a safety. Will you be loud? Are you not afraid to make a mistake? I think that’s huge, and that stuck out a little bit. We’ve got a long way to go, though.”

The New York Daily News said Deayon could have a shot to make the roster as an undrafted free agent.


Former Boise State receiver Shane Williams-Rhodes, who signed with Toronto Argonauts of the CFL, also made an early impression.

Armand Nance, who started 35 games the last three seasons for the Broncos, is playing in the Indoor Football League with the Nebraska Danger. Check out this fumble recovery he made on the kickoff (!) team.



Jay Ajayi, RB, Dolphins

Ryan Clady, OT, Jets

Kamalei Correa, LB, Ravens

Tyrone Crawford, DL, Cowboys

Donte Deayon, CB, Giants

Tyler Gray, LB, Dolphins

Marcus Henry, C, Saints

George Iloka, S, Bengals

DeMarcus Lawrence, DE, Cowboys

Charles Leno, OT, Bears

Doug Martin, RB, Buccaneers

Shea McClellin, LB, Patriots

Kellen Moore, QB, Cowboys

Rees Odhiambo, OG, Seahawks

Matt Paradis, C, Broncos

Blake Renaud, FB, Vikings

Orlando Scandrick, CB, Cowboys

Jamar Taylor, CB, Browns

Darian Thompson, S, Giants

Kyle Wilson, CB, Saints

Kelsey Young, RB, Redskins