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Behind the Facemask: Malcolm Jenkins

Posted Aug 15, 2012

Fans were able to submit questions for S Malcolm Jenkins to the Saints Twitter account

NewOrleansSaints.com is giving fans an opportunity to submit their questions for their favorite players. Throughout training camp, the Saints will announce a selected player via the team’s Twitter account (@Saints) and fans will be able to reply with questions.

On Tuesday, fans were able to submit questions for S Malcolm Jenkins.

Jenkins was drafted by the Saints in the first round of the 2009 NFL Draft from The Ohio State University. After shifting from cornerback to safety following his rookie year, Jenkins was named the Associated Press second-team All-Pro in 2010 and won NFC Defensive Player of the Week in weeks 12 and 14.

Jenkins has appeared in 44 career games with 36 starts and has recorded 230 tackles, two sacks, three interceptions with one being returned for a touchdown, 27 pass defenses, two forced fumbles, and three fumble recoveries. The former Buckeye also has registered 13 stops on special teams with two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery.  In 2011, Jenkins started all 15 games he appeared in at FS. He registered a career-high 97 tackles (66 solo) with one sack, 11 pass defenses, one forced fumble, and one fumble recovery.

Have you been able to get your hands on the football more this offseason because of the new defensive scheme or because of personal growth?

“I think it is a little bit of both. The scheme definitely puts me a lot closer to the line of scrimmage a lot. It puts me around the football a lot. That gives me the opportunities. I think the biggest thing this year is that I have been able to take advantage of those opportunities and catch the football. I am looking forward to continuing to grow in the defense and see how this season will play out.”

Are you expecting your best year yet?

“I think every year you are expecting your best year. That is what we work for. I definitely work hard to get better every day. In doing everything that I can, I am definitely hoping those efforts equal out to a better season.”

What was the biggest adjustment to the NFL?

“I think the biggest adjustment is just how you spend your time. This is a profession. You have guys that have kids, families and things like that. Just getting used to the professionalism of this game and what it actually demands of you. I think that was the biggest adjustment. The on-the-field stuff is easy. (Football) Sundays is what we have been doing since we were kids. What you do during the week for your preparation and things like that is the hardest.”

How do you feel about the up-coming season?

“I am ready to get going. I am enjoying this time right now in camp because it is allowing us to get better especially with a new defense. I think the opportunity we have this year is very unique and I think it is exciting. It imposes some challenges but I think on the other end of the challenges but I think on the other end of those challenges it is going to be a huge victory for us.”

How helpful was it to come in and play under a veteran in Darren Sharper?

“It was very good for me because I got to learn what a Pro Bowl safety looks like. I got to see how he prepared, how took care of his body, as well as how he studied the game and how he digested different things that came at him as far as routes and reading things. To be able to get that kind of experience just from talking to a guy is huge.”

Is there a specific reason you wear #27?

“Not at all. I got a choice of about four numbers and 27 was the best one. I wore two in college so I wanted something with a two in it. This is all that was available.”

Do you think that practicing in New Orleans provides you with a conditioning advantage?

“I am not sure of how much of an advantage it gives us in a game because we play in the dome and then we go anywhere else and it is whatever the air conditioners are. I think if anybody came to practice with us, I think it would be a huge advantage.”

Which QB in the NFC South do you think is the hardest to defend?

“Probably Cam Newton outside of Drew Brees. We don’t defend Drew Brees. I would have to say Cam Newton because he can throw the ball 60 yards in the air, he can throw all of the intermediate routes and he is always a threat to run it. In red-zone, he has been dominant so I think he is probably the hardest.”