With the February National Signing Day just a few days away, Tennessee has added another piece to their 2022 class. 3-star defensive end Jayson Jenkins announced on Twitter that he committed to Tennessee, over offers from teams like West Virginia, Pittsburgh, and Boston College.
Jenkins is one of the proverbial “late cycle gems” that has become commonplace in the Early Signing Period era. Less players available after December means that teams take a closer look at the guys left on the board. A portion of these players are late bloomers, who only begin getting serious recruiting attention after a strong senior season or growth spurt.
Jenkins fits firmly into this category. He received his first offer from Boston College in October, after putting together good senior season film at Notre Dame High School in Trenton, New Jersey. He later received more offers from Missouri, Virginia, Syracuse, and others.
Jenkins is a large human being, measuring in at 6-foot-6 and 260 pounds. He looks every bit of his height, often times towering over opposing linemen on the field. It will be fascinating to see how Tennessee uses Jenkins, simply because he has such a versatile frame at the moment. He could reasonably develop into a defensive end or defensive tackle. If they wanted him to check out the offense, Jenkins could also grow into an offensive tackle with some weight room work. He’s quick on his feet and has a noticeable wingspan advantage. He is definitely a raw prospect that will need a lot of work before he’s able to contribute meaningfully. Thankfully Tennessee has some veteran options on the defensive line, so Jenkins has time to figure it out.
Tennessee now has 21 commits in their high school recruiting class. Jenkins ranks as the 1,476th overall player nationally and 173rd ranked defensive lineman.