2023 Season Countdown: #8 Kris Jenkins, Jr.

2023 Season Countdown: #8 Kris Jenkins, Jr.

August 28, 2023
Kris Jenkins, Jr.

Name: Kris Jenkins, Jr.
305 lbs.
High school: 
Olney (MD) Our Lady of Good Counsel
Defensive tackle
Redshirt junior
Jersey number: 
Last year: 
I ranked Jenkins #18 and said he would be a starting defensive tackle with 35 tackles and 2 sacks (LINK). He made 54 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss, 2 sacks, and 2 quarterback hurries.
TTB Rating:

If there’s anyone who seems to follow right in his dad’s footsteps – after all the legacies Michigan has seen – it appears to be Jenkins. Jenkins, whose dad and Uncle Cullen played defensive tackle in the NFL for a long time, has grown immensely over the past two years, putting on 20 pounds in each of the past two off-seasons. Last year’s 20-pound jump put him at 285, which is feasible defensive tackle size. He proceeded to blow up a bunch of run plays, get after the passer a little bit, and put himself on the Honorable Mention All-Big Ten team. He was named Michigan’s Defensive Player of the Week five times (including sharing the honor against Illinois in week eleven).

You could make an argument to place Jenkins higher in the countdown, but I think Michigan’s defensive tackle depth is solid, especially in the two-deep with Mason Graham, Kenneth Grant, and Rayshaun Benny. Throw in grad student Cam Goode and that’s a solid fivesome, which doesn’t include redshirt sophomore Ike Iwunnah or any of this year’s freshmen. Jenkins is Michigan’s top entry in Bruce Feldman’s “Freaks List” for this year, and in some of the workout videos produced by the @umichfootball Twitter account, he looks jacked and supremely confident. I think it’s going to be a fun season of seeing him consistently in opposing backfields.

Prediction: Starting defensive tackle; 50 tackles, 4 sacks

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