Philadelphia Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins appeared on CSN Philly recently and had a lot of nice things to say about Sam Bradford. Here's all what he had to say.
Bradford started slow but finished strong
“I think it was kind of a tale of two seasons for Sam. I think early, especially in the first half of the season … I don’t know how comfortable he was in the locker room or being in the role of the leader on the team when he had just gotten here, he’s got new guys. Then he got hurt and when he came back he decided to take the team by the horns, basically. He really started to be a lot more vocal. He started to break down the huddles. He started to speak to the team before every game. And when he did that, he gained the trust of his teammates and he started playing better. At the back half of the season he played really well for us. So I think from a player’s perspective, we definitely got behind Sam in that back stretch and would really like to see him back. Moving forward we think he can be the leader and the quarterback that we need. But obviously every offseason you’re going to run into the business part of football, and that all comes down to money and dollars and that’s something as players we don’t get into. It’s not our decisions. We look up after the draft and see who all we have on our team and we move forward with that. So hopefully we can get Sam here. Like I said, I think everybody believes that he can be the quarterback and the leader that we need to take this team to a championship."
Bradford evolved as a leader
"In the first half of the season, a couple times he took the offense to the shower and it was kind of private. The back half of the season, he was addressing the entire team in the locker room. And it was clear at that moment this was his team and he was going to take it over and everybody needed that from him. It was that last boost we needed. Although it didn’t necessarily translate into wins, it it definitely translated into us playing with a lot more trust, playing together a lot more. It’s what you want to see out of your quarterback."
Jenkins would pay Bradford if it was up to him
"I don’t get into numbers. Hey, if I’m trying to win a championship, and I think he’s the quarterback, then I’d pay him."
Can Bradford be elite?
“I think, yeah. I think if you protect Sam and you give him weapons to use, I think he can be one of those quarterbacks to win a championship.”
• This is obviously a strong endorsement by Jenkins. The people who want Bradford back will enjoy this.
• Jenkins' interview comes one week after Doug Pederson sat down with 6ABC and said that he believes Bradford is very capable of leading the Eagles deep into the playoffs.
• Jenkins' opinion doesn't mean very much. That's not meant as disrespect to him. Kudos to him for sticking up for a teammate. But if the Eagles' decision makers feel differently about Bradford, Jenkins' opinion is ultimately irrelevant. And there's ample evidence to suggest Bradford might not be back with the Eagles.
• These comments by Jenkins sound familiar. Why's that? Because they're very similar to what Eagles players were saying about Nick Foles after last season. Remember these articles?
I don't need to remind you that Foles was traded and then went on to be the worst starting quarterback in the NFL in 2015.
• Bradford has never won a playoff game. He's never made the playoffs. He's never even led his team to an 8-win season. Bradford has never finished top 10 in passer rating or top 20 in yards per attempt in a given season. Ask yourself: does that sound a quarterback who can win a Super Bowl?