Michael Jenkins (Canadian football)
|Date of birth:||August 27, 1976|
|Place of birth:||Bethesda, Maryland|
|Height:||5 ft 7 in (1.70 m)|
|Weight:||207 lb (94 kg)|
*Offseason and/or practice squad member only
|Career highlights and awards|
|CFL East All-Star:||2001|
In 2000, Jenkins joined the Toronto Argonauts as a free agent. In his rookie year, he played all 18 games and gained 1,050 rushing yards on 183 carries with two rushing touchdowns complemented with 400 yards receiving. Upon the season's completion, he was voted the team's rookie of the year. With his small size and his large rushing numbers, comparisons between Jenkins and his head coach Pinball Clemons (who was a star running back during his playing days) naturally emerged. During the 2001 season, Jenkins set an Argonauts team record for most rushing yards in a season with 1484 rushing yards on 271 carries and 8 touchdowns as well as 361 receiving yards and 5 touchdowns. Earlier in the season, there was great concern by the fans over whether Jenkins' running abilities would have been stifled because of the "pass-happy" philosophy of offensive co-ordinator John Jenkins. However, head coach Clemons put his coaching authority to use and called for a more balanced offensive attack combining the pass and running games to better utilise Michael Jenkins' game. His outstanding season had him voted the team's Most Outstanding Player.
Back to the Argonauts
Jenkins returned to the Argonauts in 2003. Unfortunately, he was not able to regain the form that he had when he first joined the team. After coming back from the NFL, Jenkins' weight increased. That, combined with an abductor/groin injury in the pre-season, and recurring ankle injuries factored into his decreased productivity. Despite those shortcomings throughout the season, Jenkins rushed for 195 yards in a game vs. the Edmonton Eskimos on August 17, 2003 and earned the CFL offensive player of the week award for the achievement. By season's end, Jenkins rushed for only 814 yards on 156 carries with 6 rushing touchdowns, along with 316 yards receiving. Shortly thereafter, he had surgery on his injured ankles that hampered him during the season.
Injury and Return to Football
On May 17, 2004, Jenkins was released by the Argonauts, less than a month after the team signed free agent running back John Avery. Months later, Jenkins' agent, Danny Benjamin, alleged that his client would miss the entire 2004 CFL season because of the injured ankles and that the injury would not have been that serious had Jenkins not have gotten "bad advice from Toronto's female trainer (Erin Brooks). I have a problem with female trainers because they're female and they don't understand the male body. Their bodies are different." Brooks laughed off the allegations by saying, "Injuries are injuries. Tissues are the same (in males and females)."
Montreal Alouettes/Edmonton Eskimos
On February 18, 2005, Jenkins signed with the Montreal Alouettes, but much of his time was split between the practice roster and the injured list. He was subsequently released by the Alouettes in July. On August 22, 2005, Jenkins signed with the Edmonton Eskimos, and only played in one game on September 9, 2005 vs. the Calgary Stampeders. In that game, he rushed for 30 yards on 8 carries, combined with 1 reception for 11 yards. Jenkins went on to win a Grey Cup championship with the Eskimos that year.