Malcolm Jenkins, the Eagles’ star safety and newly extended team leader, might not be the authority on what his team plans to do at quarterback.
But in a press conference Monday announcing his $40.5 million deal (with $21 million guaranteed), the defensive back made a bold statement.
“I don’t know from a business standpoint where the team is at and where Sam [Bradford]is at,” Jenkins said.”As a player you sit back and hope for the best.I think everybody in this building wants Sam as our quarterback, that’s every player and everyone in the front office, every coach, everybody believes we can win with Sam, but every player has to handle their business as an individual… we are just waiting like everybody else.”
While Jenkins and the rest of the Philly roster waits to see if Bradford will indeed returnor if a new quarterback will be under center when training camp begins this summer, Jenkins buttoned up some personal business of his own.
In what appears to be a mutually beneficial deal, Jenkins will save the Birds $1.5 million against the cap in 2016, perhaps some more pennies to pinch to bring Bradford back, or extend Fletcher Cox.
“Ever since I got here in Philly I’ve had the 2 best seasons of my life,” the 28-year-old said.”It has really started to take off. I feel like and I am just catching stride, timing is everything in this league and its the perfect time for not only myself but for the organization to put things in place to get to the next level.”
Jenkins has a high level of confidence in the Eagles’ defense, an inconsistent unit that still showed flashes of brilliance and exceptional individual performances last season.
“I think you saw for the majority of the year when we played together and played well we were pretty much ranked in the top fivein most important categories,” Jenkins, a New Jersey native said.”That’s not by accident. We have the players in the building already to be a dominant defense. There are pieces we may need to change or address and shift around but we have what we need.
“Our strength is up front. I think that will take us to the nextlevel to cut those guys loose, have them be more productive.”
Now under yet another coaching regime, Jenkins says he is very excited by the chance to be a key cog in Jim Schwartz’ defense. He also believes his role as a locker room leader will help make the transition as seamless as possible.
“One of the biggest things I am looking forward to, itwill be new to me but I am usually a fast learner,” Jenkins, who led the Birds with 109 tackles in 2015, said.”I will approach it the same way an Eric Rowe or a rookie will approach it and when the leaders do that everyone will follow suit. A new staff will lean on the leaders, they don’t have a sense of the locker room yet.”