Malcolm Jenkins made the Pro Bowl for the first time in his career last season. It almost didn't happen. The Eagles safety was named as a seventh alternate at his position. Jenkins was rightfully upset about that. Jenkins ended up playing in the NFL's all-star game anyway after a number of players ahead of him dropped out.
The disrespect of Jenkins wasn't limited to his near-Pro Bowl snub, however. It was recently revealed that Jenkins did not make the annual NFL Top 100 players list. Now, it's hard to get super worked up about that. More than anything, the list provides NFL Network with some easy filler content during a slow time in the offseason. But the Top 100 is still voted on by the players, and it's disappointing to see Jenkins isn't valued properly by his peers, who should know better.
There's no question Jenkins, who was ranked as the top safety in the NFL by Pro Football Focus, deserves to be on the list.
The 28-year-old Jenkins finished the 2015 season with 89 tackles, two interceptions, one defensive touchdown, 10 passes defensed, three forced fumbles, and one fumble recovery. Jenkins' value goes beyond his stats. His versatility makes him incredibly useful. Nearly 30% of Jenkins' snaps came while playing as the team's nickel cornerback. According to PFF, Jenkins finished second in yards per coverage snap in the slot, giving up just 0.78 yards per rep. As if that wasn't impressive enough, Jenkins also finished fourth in the team in special teams tackles with five. He does it all.
The thing that hurts Jenkins is his set of bad hands. If he didn't drop so many interceptions, there's no question he'd get more respect. There's something to be said for being in position to get them, but he needs to finish those big plays moving forward.
Thankfully for Jenkins, the Eagles know his value. Philadelphia signed him to a four-year contract extension worth $35 million this offseason. The combination of Jenkins and Rodney McLeod, whom the Eagles signed in free agency, have the opportunity to be one of the best starting safety duos in the NFL this year.
For his part, Jenkins seems like he's ready to wake up the people who continue to sleep on him.
They'll know me soon enough... https://t.co/nvJaGUEbsV— Malcolm Jenkins (@MalcolmJenkins) July 1, 2016