Philadelphia Eagles Pro Bowler Malcolm Jenkins recently heard newly signed defensive back Rodney McLeod say the two of them could be the best safety combo in the entire NFL. Jenkins agrees and believes their chemistry will come together quickly because they both learned under the same defensive coordinator.
“He’s a young, talented player, he plays really really hard and smart. I know he will allow me to do a lot more as well, because I don’t have to bark out orders to the entire secondary. He can definitely take control of his side of the field, which will kind of free us both up,” Jenkins said. “He’s an instinctual player, and he’s coming from under Gregg Williams. He played for Gregg for about three or four years, so we speak the same language, we see things the same way, we learned the game from the same coach, so I think that’s going to be something that’s obviously going to make us that much more in tandem.
“But he’s a young player that’s on the rise, and I think if he’s playing his A-game, and I’m playing mine, I don t know why we can’t be the best tandem in the this league.”
Much of the Eagles’ off-season headlines have swirled around the team’s quarterback situation, specifically Sam Bradford’s decision to demand a trade after the team moved up in the draft to select quarterback Carson Wentz. Bradford has since rescinded his demand, but Jenkins admitted it has produced an unusual situation in their locker room for the quarterbacks.
“I think it’s awkward for Sam, it’s awkward for Carson, every teammate in that locker room. There’s an elephant in the room obviously,” Jenkins said. “But I think what everybody is doing now, especially with Sam back in the building, it’s allowing us to move forward and really, with only this season in mind, and nobody is looking two-three years down the road. It’s just about what we can get accomplished this year with the guys in this locker room, and I think everybody thinks for this year, Sam will be our quarterback, and I think everybody is confident in that as well. Sometimes, you have to let the whole business thing play itself out, but now that Sam is committed to this season, and he’s back in the building working, all is well.”
The Super Bowl XLIV champion said he wasn’t disappointed in Bradford’s initial trade demand and seemed to believe the heat the former number one overall pick received was a bit hypocritical.
“We’re use to teams doing this kind of stuff or a team trades away a player who has been really loyal to them or cuts a guy before a contract is up, and we’re used to seeing that, but when you see a player kind of take that initiative, to do or make a business decision that’s tough, we tend to jump on him. So I try not to make it personal,” Jenkins said. “As a teammate, what I decided to do was express to him that the guys in the locker room would love to have him here, but we know that he has to do what’s best for him, and at the end of the day, we have his back.
“We would love to have him in the locker room and back working out with us as soon as possible, but that’s all we can do. We can’t tell him what’s right or what’s wrong, because it’s all based on his own situation. So we try not to judge or jump to conclusions, especially because half of the headlines that were written weren’t necessary the case.”