The Chicago Bears coaching staff will need to deal with Teven Jenkins
Offensive tackle Teven Jenkins has missed three straight days of practice for the Chicago Bears. Head coach Matt Eberflus told the media on Friday that his absence had something to do with the training staff. The nibble of a hint appeared to be about an injury.
A new report from columnist David Kaplan seems to suggest something else entirely and not a serious injury. It appears the second-year offensive tackle is having issues with the new coaching staff.
According to @thekapman, "there is a high level of disconnect" between offensive lineman Teven Jenkins and the Chicago Bears coaching staff, especially with offensive line coach Chris Morgan.
— Daniel Greenberg (@ChiSportUpdates) July 31, 2022
Kaplan made these comments on his reKap episode on his YouTube channel:
“That means you have a highly immature player who’s got a lot of talent. As one person who would know, close to the team said to me: ‘He’s their most talented lineman.’ But I’m also hearing he’s wildly immature. This is on Teven Jenkins to grow the hell up.
The Bears, how many people do you have in your front office that work on culture and work on player relations? You also have to figure this out. Because if this kid has that much ability, you better get it unlocked because your offensive line right now isn’t a strength.”
This is a shocking report coming out of the first week of training camp. Jenkins has had an interesting offseason with the Chicago Bears. He’s moved from working at tackle with the first team to getting reps with the second team.
He didn’t appear perky in interviews this offseason when he defended being happy to play at right tackle. Jenkins also wasn’t shy about saying the Bears’ weight-reduction plan for the offensive line would cost him strength.
The Chicago Bears need to repair this quickly
The Bears’ offensive line is not in good shape. After losing center Lucas Patrick to injury, the team will have to move already shallow pieces around to feel gaps. Jenkins needs to be someone the Bears can depend on to start and be productive in this offense. He’s too talented to stay on the sidelines.
And then this play from Teven Jenkins has been much talked about on Twitter, but keep in mind it came 1 play after he was flagged for flinching. I got the sense he was mad at himself for the penalty so he took it out on the defense. #Bears pic.twitter.com/OAMs1BA34D
— Lester A. Wiltfong Jr. (@wiltfongjr) December 21, 2021
Jenkins has had a year to grow out of college and into the professional life of being an NFL athlete. It’s understandable for someone hired by a previous boss to feel frustrated at a company that is moving in a different direction. Especially if that direction isn’t tailored to that person’s skill set. (Jenkins came into the NFL as a big lineman who dominated with his size.)
Add to that, Jenkins isn’t really allowed to negotiate his contract for a few years. But Jenkins needs to realize that he needs to work with the coaching staff to become a better player and professional person for his long-term success with or without the Chicago Bears.
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