That much was clear during training camp earlier this week when Jenkins, a defensive end drafted in the second round, squared off against second-year offensive lineman Erik Cook in one-on-one blocking drills. Jenkins exploded off the snap and drove Cook backwards with little resistance.
Coach Mike Shanahan was standing nearby. “Love the power! Love the power!” he cheered.
Such displays by Jenkins have been common during the past week. If there’s such thing as a training camp stud before players don shoulder pads and the full squad joins practice, he is it. At the very least, the Redskins have positive first impressions about the player they recently drafted 41st overall.
“I like him,” Shanahan said. “He’s quite impressive —  pounds; he’s played the run; he’s played the pass. You can tell he’s got a big upside. You can tell he likes to work. All the things you look for in a guy, you can tell he has.”
Jenkins garnered attention playing with the first-string defense while leagues rules prevented free agent Stephen Bowen from practicing until Thursday afternoon. He consistently has pushed the left side of the Redskins‘ offensive line into the backfield on running plays during team drills.
When he stays low coming out of his stance, his effectiveness is unmistakable. Honing that technique has been his top priority.
“I’ve got to come out with my hips,” Jenkins said. “I’ve got to use more legs. I’ve got to get good leverage on these guys and get my hands inside. That’s the main thing to being powerful.”
The nature of the defensive end position allows Jenkins, who stands 6-foot-4, to focus more on technique instead of learning plays. New players at other positions, especially receivers, are cramming to learn their numerous routes and assignments in time for next week’s preseason opener. A lineman’s responsibilities in the Redskins‘ defense are simple by comparison.
In Clemson, he was “more going into a gap,” Jenkins said. “Right now, when I’m at end, I’ve got to play a man. It’s kind of working together as a defense. Everybody has a man, so that’s what I had to change to.”
“Technique-wise is the stuff he’s just got to keep working on and making sure he’s cleaning up,” defensive coordinator Jim Haslett added. “He’s a big, strong, powerful kid. I think once he gets his footwork and technique down, he’ll fit into the defense fine.”View Entire Story
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
By Douglas Holtz-Eakin
The young drop coverage to avoid higher premiums
Independent voices from the TWT Communities
We welcome you to the intimate and personal thoughts on the news and events we, as editors, watch, read, and discuss with our writers every day.
Consummate traveler Todd DeFeo explores the unique stories that make destinations worth going to.
Looking at pop culture, politics and social issues.
Political commentary and literary criticism in an era of eroding liberty
Benghazi: The anatomy of a scandal
Vietnam Memorial adds four names
Cinco de Mayo on the Mall
NRA kicks off annual convention
California wildfires wreak havoc