Displays a much better pad level off the snap and will sit lower into his stance when asked to play the run. Doesn’t do a great job extending his arms, but has the ability to win as the low man, pump his legs and consistently drive his opponent into the backfield. Is tough to move off the football, as he plays with much better leverage and has upper body strength to eventually fight off blocks inside. However, needs to do a better job using his length and hands initially into contact; too often waits until he is engaged and struggles to maintain balance and quickly shed once he puts himself around the football.
Impression: A thick, strong-bodied kid who possesses some natural athleticism as a pass rusher. Has some holes in his game and needs to learn to play with better leverage vs. the pass. But can anchor with consistency and has the ability to develop into a solid NFL defensive lineman if he works at it, either as a three- or five-technique."
Pursuit: Limited lateral ability and overall quickness impact his ability to effectively pursue the football. Jenkins does have good awareness that allows him to identify the ball carrier but his lack of range limits his ability to make plays. If Jenkins has a shot at reaching a sideline run its due to his motor and ability to identify the ball carrier.
Quickness: What Jenkins lacks in quickness he makes up for in other areas of this game. He has a decent first step off the football but not enough to constantly gain position. Jenkins also has some good closing ability showing a decent 2nd gear. However, he does lack ideal quickness which limits his versatility.
Run Defend: Recognizing the snap count and firing off the ball is an important part of defending the run and Jenkins possesses those skills. He shows a natural bend and a strong base. Jenkins low pad level allows him to maintain leverage and anchor after contact. He possesses a strong punch rolling his hips into the offensive line and delivering a jolt. When he identifies the ball carrier, he takes balanced and coordinated steps which allows him to use his heavy hands to disengage. Jenkins has the ability to play two gap football and clog running lanes. He also has a disruptive element to his game by where he is able to push the offensive line back into the backfield.
Strength: Jenkins' ability to sit into his stance and anchor through contact is a great testament of his strength. In order for Jenkins to be successful in the NFL he is going to have to be able to control blockers and keep linebackers clean. The ability to play two gap football is directly tied to a players strength. Jenkins has both a strong base and heavy hands which will allow him to anchor, control, and disengage. He also possesses a good leg drive which is visible when Jenkins pushes linemen off the ball.
Tackling: The ability and willingness to deliver a pop when making a tackle is something that Jenkins possess. He also does a nice job breaking down in the hole and remaining under control.
Technique: Overall, Jenkins has very solid technique which helps him remain consistent. He does a nice job of keeping his pad level low through the play and sitting into his stance. Jenkins rolls his hips into the offensive linemen generating good power on his punch. He takes short and balanced steps as he works his way to the ball carrier. However, I would like to see him work on being more consistent with his hand placement. If Jenkins hopes to rely on his ability to control and push the pocket he is going to need good hand placement. To often, I noticed that his hands would get on the outside shoulders rather than in around the breastplate.
Games Viewed: Boston College, South Florida, Maryland, Florida State, Georgia Tech '09
Final Word: Jenkins is a nice looking prospect that has good strength and size. However, he appears to have limited versatility and likely would best fit the nose tackle spot in a 4-3 defense. His limited suddenness and quickness mean that he isn't going to make a lot of plays away from his frame. Where he will be successful is by playing two gap football and keeping linebackers clean. I do like his ability to collapse the pocket and feel possesses the overall skills to be successful in the NFL."
Jenkins had a sack in his first game played, despite just a handful of snaps. He would end up starting for his last three seasons as a Tiger in Clemson.
Jenkins had made a name for himself against the run in his tenure at Clemson. His combination of size and strength has made him a gap stuffing force as a defensive tackle and he rarely let any man through his gap. He has shown signs of being an average pass rusher, but his strength and space eating ability is what really helped Clemson’s defensive ends get tons of pressure on opposing quarterbacks. He is strong at the point of attack and drives his feet well and can push lineman into the backfield.
Jenkins is only adequate as a pass rusher. He often plays a bit too tall and can sometimes get pushed around, despite his excellent strength. Jenkins’ conditioning could be a big downside as he often takes plays off and may not be a sure three down player in the NFL. His best fit seems to be moved to the five technique in a 3-4 defense, particularly one that rotates defensive lineman more often than other teams. He will be best utilized in run situations, as his pass rushing ability most likely won’t get much better.
I think Jenkins could rise into the bottom of the third round, but the middle of the fourth round may be the best value for the gap stuffing defensive tackle. A team like Philadelphia could look to add him for rushing downs and as a situation tackle, or a 3-4 defense like Buffalo, Arizona, Houston or San Francisco may look to grab him in the fourth round.
NFL Comparison: Ron Brace "
Positive: Athletic defensive line prospect who can be used at tackle or as a two-gap end. Displays great quickness, explodes off the snap, and shows an outstanding first step to the action. Fluid if asked to twist or stunt, plays with leverage and smooth making plays in any direction of the field. Pursues the action to the sidelines and shows speed up the field.
Negative: Easily disrupted by blocks and out-positioned by opponents. Must develop more moves with his hands. Must improve his overall playing strength.
Analysis: Jenkins is an athletically gifted prospect who moves well about the field. He lacks strength at the point of attack and at this point is mostly a first-step lineman. Jenkins offers growth potential and has starting possibilities in the NFL if he improves his playing strength."
Negatives: Not much of an arsenal with the exception of spin move... Plays too high versus the pass, allows opponent's under his pads... Lacks stamina, more of a two-down run stuffer, is not on the field in obvious passing situations... Top heavy... Overruns the pocket... Missed one game following MCL sprain early this season."
Weaknesses: Not a great finisher on the pass rush, i.e. gets a lot of pressure but few sacks. Has OK stamina, but does wear down a little bit as the game goes on and is not as effective when not kept fresh. Is somewhat inconsistent, game-to-game, and doesn't make much of an impact in some games. Average diagnoses. Average at locating the ball.
Projection: Solid late 3rd or 4th rounder."
Jenkins has proven to NFL scouts what he can do on the field, but he still has not gotten much national attention for his efforts. He is not putting up eye popping numbers so far in the 2010 campaign and it was certainly a wise idea for him to return for his senior season. Jenkins should be one of the top ten defensive tackles in this class, but his stock could rise quickly once he gets to show his stuff at the NFL Combine."
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