With the opening of OTA's for the Cowboys starting today, there has been much made about whether Mike Jenkins would be a no-show and all indications are that he will remain at his Florida home when the team takes the field.
The question is do I see this as a bad thing? No, not really. I know that is not a popular thought but Jenkins is a disappointed player on several fronts. He is in the last year of his rookie contract and was hoping that he could have got an extension. During his career he had seen Jerry Jones take care of several players so if he played well, he potentially could have had his as well. To Jenkins' credit, I thought that his 2011 season was more impressive than his 2009 season where he was outstanding.
What you have to remember about Jenkins is that he played each week with injuries that most players would have shut it down for the season but he continued to fight on because the team needed him at right corner if they were going to have any shot at the playoffs. For all the negative things you want to say about Mike Jenkins and his lack of physical toughness, he proved all of us wrong.
I understand why Jenkins feels the way he does, after watching Orlando Scandrick get an extension and playing the way he did. Then the front office goes out and spends top dollar on Brandon Carr but that was something that had to be done because of what we saw with Terence Newman. But the kicker for Jenkins was the drafting of Morris Claiborne in the first round.
This is where Jenkins makes the mistake on his thoughts and let me try and explain. When a team builds its draft board like the Cowboys did this spring and you are sitting in the middle of round, there is never a thought of getting one of your top players with that pick. You grade the players and put them on the board how you would select them. In this case, the front office had Morris Claiborne as the second best player on the board behind Andrew Luck. From speaking with other teams around the league, that grade is not out of line at all. What Jenkins doesn't understand is that Stephen Jones made an aggressive play on a situation that does not happen that often where you move from the middle of the board in to the top six and pay less than you should have. When you draft, you try and add those players that have a chance to become elite players. The Cowboys made a bold move to get that player they wanted, so give them credit even though it was at Mike Jenkins' position.
I don't see this as a bad thing with Jenkins missing these OTA's, I do see it as a bad thing that he is not rehabbing with the trainers here in Dallas on his injured shoulder. Again, I understand why Jenkins is upset after what he went through in 2011 but as we all know this is a business whether you like it or not. If Jenkins was going to be a distraction while he was here, then it's a good thing that he is away. The focus needs to be on the team as we see it now and how it will come together before training camp opens at the end of July.
If Mike Jenkins is not there when this team goes to Oxnard, then you have a story but until then, he needs to recover and get his mind right to help this football team in 2012 but there are folks here that are counting on him to do just that.