Stadium turf means Jets likely to lose Jenkins

Posted March 31, 2011 @ 3:57 p.m.
Posted By Eli Kaberon

Despite missing 25 regular-season games the past two seasons, NT Kris Jenkins wants to play in 2011. It might not be with the Jets, however, due in large part to the playing surface at New Meadowlands Stadium.

Jenkins, who turns 32 in early August, tore the ACL in his left knee in both 2009 and '10, the latter coming in the first quarter of the first game of the season. The two major surgeries to his knee have made the veteran tackle more careful about the wear and tear his body takes, especially when it comes to field surface. Jenkins told a reporter that even though he loved playing for Rex Ryan, he wants to continue his career playing for a team whose home games are on natural grass; New Meadowlands has FieldTurf. Last season, 18 of the 32 teams played their home games on grass.

Acquiring a young defensive lineman was already a top priority for the Jets, as Jenkins, Shaun Ellis, Trevor Pryce and Sione Pouha are all closer to the end of their careers than the start. That need becomes even greater if Jenkins is not on the roster to provide depth. Working in the Jets' favor is the fact that defensive line is the deepest position in this year's draft and the team should be able to find a very good D-lineman with the 30th selection.