With the future uncertain, the 35-year-old plans to honor his family in a fashion fad he’s never attempted in his previous 183 games — customized cleats.
“I’ve never been around people that have gotten cleats done this much before,” Jenkins said. “It ain’t never really been an option to me before of having a pair of cleats done up. It’s different. I’m a pretty simple person. I just always wear what’s given to us.”
Defensive end Ricky Jean Francois, who has consistently worn custom cleats during his two seasons in Washington, got Jenkins in touch with a customizer. Jenkins’s cleats will incorporate his family symbol and the names of his wife, Pashun, and his children, Jasmin and Ashanti. Jenkins said he’ll get the cleats on Saturday night, just in time for the game.
“I’ve had the pictures in here of my kids, and I just thought that I don’t know what will happen after this year,” Jenkins said. “I think it’ll be something nice to give to them as a little memento of me playing and something to show them a little love on the field.”
Jenkins, the oldest player on the Redskins roster, said his experience in Washington this year has been enjoyable. This is the first time Jenkins has been on a winning team (8-7-1) since he won the Super Bowl with the Green Bay Packers at the end of the 2010 season. Jenkins spent five seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles and the Giants in between and never went back to the playoffs.
The Redskins have an opportunity to change that with a victory over New York. With a win, they need to hope the Detroit Lions’ contest against the Green Bay Packers doesn’t end in a tie on Sunday night to clinch the sixth seed.
“This would be the first year since then,” Jenkins said. “Hopefully, we can make it to the playoffs. It’d be nice to get back again. I’m just motivated, and this whole experience has been great.”
He signed with Washington the week before its preseason finale against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Jenkins made a favorable impression, but was cut. He re-signed with the Redskins following their loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 1 and has appeared in 14 games with 15 combined tackles and a half-sack.
“My route to get to the NFL and get to where I’m at, I never thought in a million years that as an undrafted free agent in 2003 that’d it be 2016, heck the game is in 2017, and I’d still be out here playing,” Jenkins said. “It’s been a blessing.”