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Brandon Jenkins missed his opportunity with the Redskins

Jul 27, 2014, 4:29 PM EDT

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RICHMOND—The Redskins gave up on their 2013 fifth-round pick as they waived linebacker Brandon Jenkins.

“We like the play of the guys that were behind him,” said Jay Gruden. “They stepped up their play. Adrian Robinson, Gabe Miller has had some good snaps. The drafting of Trent Murphy had a major impact.”

The clear implication was that Jenkins didn’t step up his play in response to the challenges from Robinson, who is with his fourth NFL team in two seasons in the league, and Miller, who has yet to play in a game despite being with three teams. Draft status will only get you so far, especially when it was the old regime, in this case Mike Shanahan, who drafted you.

As to the timing, Gruden said, “We thought the earlier we make that move it give Brandon a chance somewhere else so it’s beneficial to him.”

The Redskins held on to a second long snapper, Kyle Nelson, until the eve of training camp so they are not always concerned with giving another player a chance to catch on somewhere else. There’s nothing wrong with that but it would be wise to take such statements with a grain of salt. They just didn’t want him around.

The organization thought it might have scored a draft steal when they took Jenkins with the 162nd overall pick. He was highly rated in preseason draft reports going into his senior season at Florida State but he suffered a Lisfranc injury in the season opener. That caused his draft stock to plunge and the Redskins figured he was worth a shot at that point in the draft.

But his career never really got any traction. He was not expected to start because of the presence of Brian Orakpo and Ryan Kerrigan but it was hoped that he could get in some situational snaps and get groomed for a bigger role.

But Jenkins couldn’t earn a spot on the 46-man game day roster. Due to a lack of enthusiasm for playing special teams, Jenkins was active for only five games. If a player can’t stay active he can’t get those situational snaps.

Jenkins’ status for 2014 became precarious when the team re-signed Rob Jackson and drafted Trent Murphy in the second round. He became truly endangered when he had a particularly poor practice on Sunday morning. By early Sunday afternoon he was released.

  1. kenlinkins - Jul 28, 2014 at 9:28 PM

    Wow, this was a minor shock so early in training camp but I guess the new coaching staff is not going to wait on anyone. Either you make the grade or you don’t. My hat is off to coach Gruden for showing early (and often if you count Gumbs and D. Gettis) that he will not allow anyone to coast on this team. IMO This is how to build a better team!

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