Nobody can accuse Myles Jack of overselling the long-term health of his surgically-repaired right knee.
The former UCLA star linebacker acknowledged the potential for microfracture surgery in the future, a procedure that carries a level of risk that could affect how NFL clubs perceive his draft value as the 2016 NFL Draft commences Thursday night. NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reported Tuesday that microfracture surgery is a possibility for Jack down the line.
"(The degenerative problems are) there, but it's nothing extreme," Jack told The New York Post on Wednesday. "Down the line, possibly I could have microfracture surgery -- potentially. Who knows what will happen? Nobody knows how long anybody is going to play in this league. To play three years in this league would be above average."
Once considered a likely top-five selection in the draft, Jack's knee could now drop him out of the top 10. NFL Media draft expert Mike Mayock projected him to be chosen No. 14 overall by the Oakland Raiders in his Wednesday mock draft, echoing concern about the possibility of a second surgery. NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport also reported that Jack is likely to fall to the teens, with the Dolphins and Raiders as possible destinations.
"With a top-10 pick, typically you don't want to touch that. He's going to slide. I don't know how far," Mayock said.
The pace of Jack's recovery prevented him from participation in the NFL Scouting Combine in February, and limited his participation in UCLA's pro day in March. He posted an impressive 40-inch vertical jump there, but canceled a personal pro day scheduled for April 1, when he was expected to run his first 40-yard dash for scouts. Jack harbors no bitterness about the possibility of a draft slide, at least none that he spoke of Wednesday.
"I would understand if I fell," Jack said. "This is a talented draft class, so if I was to fall, I wouldn't take it personally."
Unlike another of the draft's top linebackers, Jaylon Smith of Notre Dame, Jack is expected to be ready to play in 2016. That's helped Jack maintain his status as a potential first-round pick, but his wait in the green room Thursday night could be a prolonged one.