Behind all of the excitement of the first training camp in Richmond, was the opening week’s news that defensive lineman Adam Carriker will start the season on the PUP list and Jarvis Jenkins will miss the first quarter of the season due to suspension.
Jenkins, who started the 14 games last season after replacing Carriker, was widely speculated by Redskins fans and NFL pundits alike to have a breakout campaign. While he can still certainly wreak havoc upon his return Week 6 against the Cowboys (Week 5 is a bye), he’ll be sidelined to start.
After the news broke that Jenkins would indeed be sitting the first four games of the season, Redskins.com posted a poll asking fans which player will start at left defensive end in his absence between Kedric Golston, Chris Baker and Phillip Merling.
Here are the results:
Golston taking home nearly three fourths of the vote isn’t too much of a surprise considering the fact that Baker is naturally a nose tackle and before Thursday night’s game, a good chunk of fans had never seen Merling in action.
On the team’s first unofficial depth chart of the year, Jenkins was listed as a starter alongside Barry Cofield and Stephen Bowen. You may have also seen him corralling a few Titans the other night, too.
So, what gives?
Well the answer is simple—he can still play in the preseason.
Golston, similar to his 2006 draft classmate Reed Doughty, is one of those players coaches want on their team. Sure he’d love to make a name for himself on the starting 11, but his do whatever it takes to help the team win mentality allows him to crack the starting lineup more times than not.
While getting only seven percent of the vote, Merling showed flashes of promise against the Titans. He recorded three tackles, a sack and swatted down one of seasoned veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick’s five pass attempts.
Morale of this story—regardless of who fills in over the first month of the season, the Redskins defensive line is in great hands.
Tags: adam carriker, Chris Baker, jarvis jenkins, Kedric Golston, Phillip Merling
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