Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Saints Nation: Is it time to start getting worried about Malcolm Jenkins?

Through Monday night, Malcolm Jenkins is still without contract and I'm starting to resign myself to the fact that Jenkins' rookie season awaits the same fate that Robert Meachem endured. The dreaded "redshirt" rookie year is coming closer and closer to fruition. Before I get ahead of myself, let's wait and see what happens this week. But the fact remains that, according to Sean Payton, Jenkins has already missed 3 defensive installments. It's not so much that Jenkins couldn't sign soon and make up for lost time, it's that there's a lot of pretty good players ahead of him. Just like Meachem, who had Colston, Moore, Henderson and Patten ahead of him prior to signing, Jenkins has 4-5 players he's not guaranteed to beat out. Tracy Porter, Jabari Greer and Randall Gay are all three entrenched at the top 3 corner spots (in no specific order), and Leigh Torrence and Jason David are no slouches either. What's more, free agent rookie Danny Gorrer has had a pretty impressive camp up to this point. While I don't doubt a little time on the field would help Jenkins move ahead of some of these guys, they are all good players and most have more experience at the NFL level than Jenkins.

The thing that's so frustrating about this situation is that Malcolm Jenkins wants to be here. He's already in New Orleans, and if you read his twitter you know he's staying in shape by working out everyday and studying the playbook to stay as sharp as possible before joining his teammates. There's really no excuse for this happening, because Brian Orakpo (drafted ahead of him) and Brian Cushing (drafted after him) are now both signed which means the benchmarks for his contract are set. Jenkins is handcuffed by the ping pong match Mickey Loomis is having with his agents. It's too bad because the guy wants to play, and he's going to sit on the bench. The longer the negotiations go, the less chance Jenkins will have of seeing the field this year unless there are serious injuries to a couple of guys ahead of him.