With the switch to a 3-4 base defense more run stoppers will be needed for the Bears.
The 26-year-old was selected in the second round by Washington in 2011. In four seasons there, Jenkins made 33 starts in 44 appearances. The Clemson product has 75 tackles and two sacks in his NFL career.
He made 14 starts last season while producing 28 tackles at left defensive end. He had five games with three or more tackles. He also started 14 games in 2012.
His rookie season was spent on injured reserve after he suffered torn right ACL in the preseason. He was suspended four games in 2013 for violating the league’s policy against performance-enhancing substances.
Jenkins battled a rib injury that kept him out of most of the Week 4 matchup with the Giants last season. He joins guard Vladimir Ducasse and tight end Dante Rosario as the bargain one-year deals the Bears have made over the past week.
At 6-foot-4, 315 pounds Jenkins sounds more like a defensive tackle, but in a 3-4 scheme he projects as a nice fit as five-technique. He played on 540 defensive snaps in 2014 ranking 45th out of 47 qualified 3-4 defensive ends by Pro Football Focus.
He is a run stopper and that is likely how he’ll be used in the Bears’ defense under Vic Fangio. This is a low-risk signing considering Jenkins won’t be 27 until next month.
Jenkins adds depth to a defense that will look a whole lot different after next month’s draft and the next wave of free agent signings.
The Bears had $14.9 million in cap room after the signing of Rosario last week, according to CBS Sports insider Dan Durkin. They currently have 59 players under contract.
Two other names to watch for the Bears in the near future are defensive tackle Ray McDonald and linebacker Mason Foster. The Bears have been connected to Foster for weeks now, but after Jenkins made the signing official on Twitter earlier Tuesday it appeared Foster was ready to join him.
@Jarvis99jenkins the bro makin it official….I might get to finally play wit the bro
— Mason_Foster (@Mason_Foster) March 24, 2015
McDonald may seem like a scary name to hear for Bears fans as he’s been in trouble off the field often the past year. He was arrested on suspicion of domestic violence on August 31, 2014, but no charges were made. In December, he was released by San Francisco after being named a suspect in a sexual assault investigation.
Off the field, the 30-year-old has been a nightmare as of late, but he still hasn’t technically been charged with anything just yet. The Florida product has 210 tackles, 19.5 sacks and four forced fumbles in 68 starts in eight seasons.
The Bear Report’s Aaron Leming reported that the Bears were close to a deal with McDonald, according to a source close to the team. Both deals with McDonald and Foster are expected to be one-year if they are indeed signed.
Thoughts on the signing of Jenkins and the possible additions of Foster and McDonald?
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