Dallas Cowboys second-string tight end Martellus Bennett has what is called the Sophmore Slump. Mike Jenkins, a sophmore cornerback, did not.
At this time last year we all were thinking that Bennett was going to be a super star tight end and Jenkins was going to be a bust first round pick. Boy were we wrong.
Bennett had such a disappointing 2009 season that Jerry Jones remarked that he better get his act together.
Jones told the Dallas Morning News that Bennett can be a star in this league, while praising linebacker Anthony Spencer for having a break-out season:
“Spencer has been down to business since he walked in the door,” Jones said. “Bennett can get down to business. I know that he can … The bottom line is, we all see what a tremendous weapon he is and can be. His blocking is really as impressive as his ability to be a big target for [Tony] Romo. I’m confident he sees that. He’s extremely smart. He can get it. I think focus would be the word. He will get a lot more Tweets if he’s a big-time ballplayer than he will just off of his creative ability.”
I found Jones’ little jab about Bennett’s tweeting was interesting.
Mike Jenkins, on the other hand, deserved a first-time Pro Bowl. He didn’t play every game with incredible pass protection, but he showed he can be a strong defender in the NFL. He had five interceptions this year, including one for a touchdown, and 45 solo tackles. He played as good as Terence Newman, who is playing in the Pro Bowl.
There is no reason to lose hope on Bennett because the Cowboys have an All-Pro tight end who is a force in the NFL. But having Bennett as that unexpected weapon last year was very helpful. If he had mirrored his rookie season, the Cowboys might still be playing this Sunday.