Can Dallas CB Mike Jenkins Have a Successful Year Without New Contract?

Jason Henry@thenprojectCorrespondent IJune 18, 2012

ARLINGTON, TX - DECEMBER 11:  Cornerback Mike Jenkins #21 of the Dallas Cowboys is slow to get up in the end zone in the second quarter against the New York Giants at Cowboys Stadium on December 11, 2011 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

The saga of Mike Patrick Jenkins and the Dallas Cowboys continues. There were recent reports that Jenkins wasn’t exactly forthcoming with the Cowboys regarding his offseason shoulder surgery. Team owner Jerry Jones refuted that report by stating the team has his records and it was a non-issue.

Kind of hard to believe that when Jenkins has lobbied the team for a new deal and a trade.

In my opinion, Jenkins is too important for the Cowboys to trade or just release. He was the team’s best cornerback last season and injuries are the main cause as to why so many fans and pundits are down on him.

But 2011 should show those who have a negative outlook or opinion on Jenkins that he is a tough guy. His surgically repaired shoulder is evidence that he played through a lot of pain last season and the fact that he still graded as the best corner on the team should be close to enough proof that he’s needed.

While I believe there is enough listed for people to believe in him, how will Jenkins respond? Will he do enough to show that his contract and position with the Cowboys isn’t impacting his play in 2012?

Here is the interesting part about Jenkins and how he may respond in 2012. If he can beat out Orlando Scandrick for the slot position, Jenkins will be on the field for the majority of the defensive snaps anyway.

Scandrick is a decent defensive player who still seems to be growing but Jenkins is a much better corner than Scandrick. If Jenkins has no issues with his shoulder during training camp, I don’t see a reason as to why he shouldn’t work the slot for the Cowboys.

As far as what we’ve seen so far from Jenkins, he is functioning as a professional. He has shown up to mini-camp and has worked as the team expected. He has not spoken to the media but has not given anyone a reason to believe that he will be a distraction for the team moving forward.

The key for Jenkins will be when the Cowboys face teams like the Giants, Steelers, Saints and Eagles. These are teams that will test him in the slot and how he responds will determine how far he will go.

I fully expect Jenkins to remain with the team for the duration of the season and to have a successful go at it. He will be a key defender for the Cowboys in 2012 and because of his play this year; he will be rewarded with a new deal at season’s end.

It just will not be with the Dallas Cowboys.

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