It was just over 24 hours ago that we took a look at Sidney Rice’s departure and where the Vikings would go from there. In doing so, we listed 13 WRs on the market and assessed if and how they would fit in well with the Vikings.
In a sign of how quickly things can change, especially in this hyper-active environment of player movement because of the lockout, there is a WR on the market who might jump to the front of the line – Michael Jenkins.
Jenkins was a first-round pick (#29 overall) of the Atlanta Falcons back in 2004, but he was recently released by the Falcons and is now free to sign with any team. Jenkins became dispensable because the Falcons made a blockbuster trade in last April’s draft to jump into the Top 10 picks and select WR Julio Jones.
In seven seasons with the Falcons, Jenkins never quite produced up to the level you expect from a first-round WR. He did have 7 TDs in 2006, but he never caught more than 53 passes in a season and then his opportunities really decreased when Roddy White came onto the scene.
So why is he a potential fit in Minnesota? For starters, the Vikings do have several bodies on the WR depth chart who are capable of proving themselves in training camp. But it never hurts to add more talent, and there’s no denying Jenkins’ talent and there’s also no denying that Rice’s departure to Seattle leaves a vacancy on the Vikings depth chart.
Digging deeper, though, remember that the Vikings new offensive coordinator is Bill Musgrave, who came to Minnesota after five seasons as an assistant coach in Atlanta. Also, I’ve often described Vikings WRs coach George Stewart as one of the best in the business, and he was the Falcons WRs coach for four seasons from 2003-06.
If you go back and read the last three paragraphs closely, you’ll discover that the only season Jenkins, Musgrave and Stewart were all in Atlanta together was Jenkins most productive campaign in terms of TDs.
So in summary, there is an opportunity at WR for Jenkins with the Vikings and he’d be working with a pair of familiar coaches. I’m not privy to his injury history and I certainly haven’t watched enough film of him to diagnose how much he’s got left in the tank, but on the surface level a union between Jenkins and the Vikings makes some sense.
We’ll see what happens, so stay tuned…
Tags: Bill Musgrave, George Stewart
Posted in All, Mike Wobschall | 186 Comments »