In another move aimed at upgrading their 31st-ranked defense, the Washington Redskins used the 41st pick of the NFL draft to select Clemson lineman Jarvis Jenkins.
The 6-foot-3, 309-pound Jenkins played defensive tackle for the Tigers, but also has the ability to play end in the 3-4 defense, which is where the Redskins plan on using him.
“They told me they run a 3-4 defense under Mike Shanahan, and they told me I’m going to be a two-gap guy, and I can do that: two-gap or three,” Jenkins said before adding. “I can get in and do whatever anybody asks me. . . . I’m all about winning. I’ll sit there on two knees if that’s what they want me to do.”
Asked to describe his strengths, Jenkins said, “I’m more of a run-stopper. I’m physical at the point of attack. I can take double-teams, and I can beat double-teams. I’ve been seeing them all through Clemson. I’ve got to work more on the pass-rush part. ... I’m the kind of guy that does the dirty work.”
A three-year starter for the Tigers, Jenkins recorded 158 tackles (31 for a loss, which are most in Clemson history). He has been praised for his leadership skills and possesses good quickness, and nimble footwork.
Jenkins said it was a surprise to get a call from the Redskins. He was expecting to be taken behind fellow Clemson lineman Da’Quan Bowers, but then the phone rang and Bowers, who has taken a slide because of knee problems, still on the board.
“It was a complete surprise,” Jenkins said. “I never thought they would’ve picked me. ... I was watching the draft, Dallas had the pick in, I was going outside to talk to my grandmama. My phone rang and I was thinking there would be a lot of noise and it was all calm. It was like ‘Jarvis, this is Mike Shanahan. We’re going to take you.’”
When asked about being taken ahead of Bowers, who was the star of Clemson’s defensive line, Bowers said, “If you told me 10 times I wouldn’t have believed you at all.”