Editor's Note: With the offseason in full swing, the focus is now shifting to the 2016 season, where the Cowboys have one of the toughest schedules in the NFL. Not only do the Cowboys face five playoff teams but many of the top players in football. So the writers of DallasCowboys.com have ranked the Top 50 players expected to be on the field this season, including the Cowboys. Today, we continue the list with Eagles safety Malcom Jenkins.
Name: Malcom Jenkins
Height/Weight: 6-0 / 205
Experience: 7 seasons
College: Ohio State
2016 vs. Cowboys:Jenkins and the Eagles travel to Arlington for an Oct. 30 meeting on Sunday Night Football before the Eagles play host to Dallas in the regular-season finale on Jan. 1.
What's the Deal: Jenkins has become one of the NFL's top safeties, and has shown a knack for finding the football, totaling 11 interceptions in his career, which began with the Saints for five years before spending the last two seasons in Philadelphia.
Jenkins earned his first Pro Bowl last year with the Eagles as he enjoyed his second straight year of playing in all 16 games.
Expect This: Jenkins will get his hands on the ball, one way or another. Not only has he picked off 11 passes in his career, but he's forced 10 fumbles and recovered seven. Last year, Jenkins had a 99-yard interception return for a touchdown against Tom Brady and the Patriots in Philly's upset in New England. Jenkins has also scored five career touchdowns – four from interception returns and another fumble return. [embeddedad0]
Previous Meetings: While Jenkins has never posted an interception against the Cowboys, he did make a game-changing forced fumble in the 2010 Thanksgiving Day game as a member of the Saints. With the Cowboys leading late in the game, receiver Roy Williams made a first-down catch that seemingly put the Cowboys in command to win. However, Jenkins tackled Williams from behind, jarring the ball loose. Jenkins recovered the ball, which led to Drew Brees driving the field to throw a game-winning touchdown to stun the Cowboys and interim coach Jason Garrett, who was seeking his third straight win since taking over for Wade Phillips.
Bryan Broaddus Scouting Report:
- If you are a Cowboys fan, you should hope that one day Byron Jones turns into Malcolm Jenkins. Jones has similar traits to Jenkins in the areas of physical and mental toughness but he is also starting to develop in his football intelligence. Put on a clinic covering Cole Beasley out of the slot when these two teams met last season.
- Has the flexibility to play several positions in the secondary. Shows the ability to close suddenly or make up speed. Plays much faster than his timed speed. Good recoverability. Can stick his foot in the ground and drive on the ball. Loose hips, smooth and fluid in transition. Can run a back down from behind.
- Quick to read and react. Thinks on his feet. Quick reactions to play off blocks and make a play. Can turn and run with speed vertical receivers or carry tight ends underneath. Keeps position on the receiver and has good leaping ability and timing to make a play on the ball.
- Willing to support the run. Plays off blocks without getting bounced around.
- Productive playmaker when tested. Big safety with long arms. Good athletic ability. Hard guy to fool. Can cover for the mistakes that his teammates make.
- Turnover machine – always around the ball trying to rip it loose. Puts himself in position to make plays.
- One of the best finishers in the game when it comes to tackling.
The writers of DallasCowboys.com have ranked the Top 50 players expected to be on the field this season, including the Cowboys.