NFL teams will go to great lengths to find pass rushers. Even taking a chance on former soccer players from Bath, England who didn’t really begin learning the game until age 18. Which brings us to the story of New York Giants defensive lineman Alex Jenkins.
Let’s delve into that story as we continue profiling the 90 players the Giants will bring to training camp this summer.
Position: Defensive line
How he got here
Jenkins, per the video above, played a little bit of community football in England, but didn’t really turn to the game until being cut when trying out for what he called a “high level” soccer team in England.
The video above details much of the story, but Jenkins moved to American and ended up at Incarnate Word, a brand new Division I program in San Antonio, Tx. where he really began to learn the game and play it seriously.
In 2017, Jenkins landed on the practice squad of the New Orleans Saints as part of the NFL’s International Players Pathway program. That programs gives teams an exemption to add international player to their practice squad. Jenkins spent two season on the Saints practice squad, with the Saints getting an exemption for the second year.
After the Saints let him go, he earned a contract with the Giants by impressing during a rookie mini-camp tryout.
This one is hard to figure. Back in 2017, Saints’ defensive coordinator Dennis Allen said Jenkins has “got a little pass rush.”
Does, he, however, have any place on the Giants’ roster? At 258 pounds, he seems too light to be a 3-4 defensive end. There doesn’t appear to be a place for him as an edge player, though there isn’t a lot of depth at that spot behind Markus Golden, Lorenzo Carter, Kareem Martin and Oshane Ximines.
A check with the league office revealed that Jenkins does still have practice squad eligibility, so that remains a possibility.