Yesterday, Mike Jenkins announced to the media that he wouldn’t be speaking to them this season. The inconsistent Jenkins is apparently irked by the criticism he received over the off-season. Essentially, Mike has told everyone that he will be taking his ball and going home.
I’m a pretty big fan of 2009 Mike Jenkins. However, I found 2008 and 2010 Mike Jenkins to be infuriating. Guys that quit on plays drive me nuts and I’m sure I’m not alone in that. In fact, I know I’m not. There are a lot of fans that don’t like Jenkins because he is seen as a quitter. When things are going bad he loses himself and often shies away from contact. I doubt many need to be reminded of that play against the Giants a couple of years ago.
If Jenkins were playing well and still taking criticism, that would be one thing. However, he was atrocious last year. If he is annoyed with anyone, it should be himself. Granted, the Dallas media isn’t always the most objective group, but there aren’t a lot of positive things to say about Mike Jenkins right now. He made the Pro Bowl in 2009, and, instead of building on that, he regressed significantly last season. That’s his fault, not the media’s.
The right thing for Jenkins to do in this situation would be to own up to his poor play. If the criticism offends him, he should use that as fire for this season. And, maybe that’s what he is doing. However, if he gives everyone the silent treatment and continues to play the way he did last season, that will reflect very poorly on him. He needs to realize that increased scrutiny comes with the territory when you play for the Cowboys. No matter what’s being said, he has to ignore it, and, even if the media chatter is getting to him, the worst possible thing he can do is let everyone know that.
Yesterday, Clarence E. Hill called Jenkins’ stance “soft”. I can’t disagree with that. You can’t play lousy and then get all hurt when you are called out for it. If he doesn’t like it, he should play better. Nobody had anything bad to say about him a couple of years ago.
Toughen up, Mike. This isn’t South Florida; it’s the Dallas Cowboys. The media will chew you up and spit you out if you’ll let them. And, right now, you’re definitely allowing that to happen.