Malcolm Jenkins, Eagles Agree to New Contract: Latest Details and Reaction

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Malcolm Jenkins, Eagles Agree to New Contract: Latest Details and Reaction
Michael Perez/Associated Press

The Philadelphia Eagles announced Monday that they agreed to terms on a new five-year contract with dynamic defensive back Malcolm Jenkins.  

Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reported that Jenkins' extension is for four years and $35 million, with $21 million in guarantees. Rapoport added that Jenkins' full contract is worth $40.5 million over five years. The deal ranks Jenkins third behind Earl Thomas and Devin McCourty in terms of contracts for safeties, according to Tom Pelissero of USA Today.

Jason Cole of Bleacher Report, citing a source "who has seen a breakdown of the deal," noted that the new contract includes a $7.5 million signing bonus.

Mike Garafolo of Fox Sports reported Jenkins will get $16 million in guarantees over the first two years of the deal, and another $5 million in guaranteed money at the start of 2018, noting the Eagles "will decide on him again there."

"Eagles create $1.5 million of 2016 salary-cap room with Malcom Jenkins' four-year, $35 million extension. 2016 cap number goes from $7,166,668 to $5,666,668," noted CBS Sports' Joel Corry on Twitter.

Jenkins spoke about the deal, telling reporters the contract "gives you confidence that if you play well, you will be rewarded."

"It felt good to me to know I was on list of players they felt they could build around to win a championship," Jenkins added.

Jenkins racked up 109 combined tackles, 10 passes defensed, two interceptions and three forced fumbles in 2015. The 28-year-old was entering a contract year in 2016, but his long-term future in Philadelphia is now secure.

For someone who started his NFL career as a cornerback and has lined up at both safety positions, there aren't many defensive backs who have been more versatile than Jenkins. He's also been extremely durable over the past few seasons, as ESPN's Field Yates noted:

Pro Football Focus named Jenkins to its All-Pro team in 2015, giving him first-team honors at strong safety. He has the coverage skills to line up at cornerback when necessary but can also swarm to the football in run support.

The Eagles' official Twitter account shared some highlights from Jenkins' 2015 campaign:

As Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer pointed out, Jenkins lined up in the slot for 47 percent of his snaps last season. That goes to show just how unique a player he is and why the Eagles couldn't afford to lose him.

Jenkins touched on his growth, telling reporters the past two seasons were "huge" for his career and that he has "really started to take off."

By signing Jenkins to a long-term extension, Philadelphia has secured a legitimate franchise cornerstone in its secondary as it embarks on a new era under head coach Doug Pederson and his staff.

As for other players whose futures in Philadelphia are uncertain, Jenkins told reporters that free agent Walter Thurmond is "definitely a guy I want to continue to play with. He's a player who made a lot of plays."

Jenkins also gave quarterback Sam Bradford a vote of confidence, saying"I think everybody in this building wants Sam (Bradford) to be back. We can win with Sam."

Former NFL head coach Jim Schwartz is Philadelphia's new defensive coordinator and will need some time to install his system. Jenkins said that he knows "for a fact" that Schwartz "knows how to mold his defense to what his players do best.

Having a veteran like Jenkins in that defense is a big plus, and he should be of even more help now that he has resolved his contract situation.

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