Last year cornerback Mike Jenkins was the number one cornerback on the Dallas Cowboys depth chart and fighting through injuries to produce a solid season. However, the Cowboys defense, and secondary in particular, needed a major overhaul and they got one last off-season.
The additions of Brandon Carr and Morris Claiborne left Jenkins out of the starting lineup and saw him relegated to fourth on the depth chart because Orlando Scandrick’s best position is in the slot. He also had shoulder surgery and rehabbed the injury away from the Cowboys, which didn’t sit well with the team.
Even though Jenkins’ role has decreased from what it once was with the team, he’s now back in position to help the Cowboys defense with Scandrick out. Jenkins is seeing more playing time at a new position for him, the slot. He admittedly got beat by Antonio Brown for a touchdown last week but he’s still learning the position.
Jenkins is a free agent after the year leading to speculation that the Cowboys will attempt to re-sign him. Throughout all the loss of playing time and him coming back from shoulder surgery, Jenkins’ stock isn’t where it would have been at any time last year. Now people are starting to wonder whether the Cowboys might be bringing Jenkins back.
ESPNDallas.com’s Calvin Watkins wonders if it would be advantageous to both the Cowboys and Mike Jenkins if he returns on a one-year contract. His reasoning is that it could give Jenkins the opportunity to improve on his play from this year and the Cowboys could benefit from the depth at cornerback.
The idea is sound and I don’t disagree with the premise but I’m not sure how being the fourth corner will put enough good tape out there for Jenkins to get the contract he wants. It probably would make more sense for Jenkins to sign somewhere else on a short contract where he could get more playing time next year and then cash in.
I’m on record as saying the Cowboys should try to keep Jenkins because you can never have enough cornerbacks. If we’ve learned anything this season, it’s that you need as many good players as you can get.
I would love to see him comeback to the Cowboys but at what price? Dallas also has more pressing needs to address and they don’t have a ton of money to spend. Priority number one should be re-signing Anthony Spencer, priority number two is upgrading the offensive line and we haven’t even gotten into re-signing quarterback Tony Romo. So unless Jenkins is willing to take a short contract at a smaller salary, it looks like Jenkins will test free agency.
I’d love to have Mike Jenkins back next year, but it doesn’t seem likely.
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