In quite a surprising piece of news, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported on Monday that Eagles Safety, Malcolm Jenkins, has actually reported for the team’s mandatory minicamp. It was assumed that Jenkins would skip the workouts in a ‘contract holdout’, ultimately losing $80,000 in doing so. Alas, the veteran safety will be working out with his teammates at the NovaCare Complex, but that doesn’t mean the talks of a new deal should suddenly come to a close.
The Eagles needed Jenkins around and after all, he’s one of the team’s most influential leaders both on and off the field. During OTA’s, Tre Sullivan and Deiondre Hall have been seeing a lot of exposure in the absence of the 3-time pro bowler, which isn’t exactly smooth sailing considering neither are regarded as regular pieces in rotation. Jenkins helping out his teammates and taking that leadership upon himself should come as no surprise at all.
But the point remains, Jenkins is criminally underpaid.
The 31-year old played every single snap last season and has missed just 1.6% of snaps since signing with the team in 2014; a truly astonishing feat.
Jenkins ended last year with 97 tackles, 3 forced fumbles, one pick, and a sack. But more importantly he was the glue keeping a secondary that had lost every other starter, together. Players who had never taken to the field in midnight green were lining up under his guidance, while Jenkins was directly helping Jim Schwartz adjust and shape the defense during games.
The Eagles recently handed Carson Wentz a four-year contract extension worth $128M, but with other details still scarce, including how the money is spread out, it’s quite difficult to decipher whether or not this is playing an impact in what could and should be a relatively simple bump in guaranteed money.
It’s worth noting that the Eagles would want to carry as much cap space as possible into next season, where as of right now, they are projected to be $41,740,057 over the cap (according to Spotrac).
But cap worries aside as the backloaded deals haunt Roseman once more, Jenkins isn’t just the heartbeat of the defense, but the entire locker room and just because he’s showing up to Mandatory Minicamp, this shouldn’t put a cap on his contract talks. If anything, it just gives the Eagles even more reason to keep Jenkins around. Knowing that even in an instance where holding out is arguably in his best interests, he still puts the team first.
Mandatory Photo Credit: Bill Streicher – USA Today