Expectations were high for the Georgia linebacker when the Jets selected him 83rd overall. Coming from a similar system in college to the one Todd Bowles likes to operate, Jenkins picked up the defensive scheme quickly and impressed coaches with his play and his IQ. Unfortunately, he suffered a late injury to his calf in training camp which derailed his development early. Having missed the first two games of the season, Jenkins finished up appearing in the final 14, starting 11 of them.
To me, Jenkins got better and better the more he played. He finished the season with 41 tackles, 2.5 sacks and 1 forced fumble. However you have to look at how he finished as a reason for optimism. Over the final four games of the season, Jenkins had 2.5 sacks, 1 forced fumble and 17 tackles...things started to click and expectations will be a lot higher in year two.
Consider that PFF rated him as the 2nd best rookie edge rusher in his first year, falling in behind Joey Bosa who was taken 3rd overall by the San Diego Chargers. That's pretty impressive for a 3rd round selection, especially when you consider that he was graded at 73.7 and no other rookie (apart from Bosa) graded over 65. On this occasion the eye test and the statistics match-up.
Jenkins will go in with a firm grasp on one of the OLB starting positions and I'd be surprised if he didn't make a leap in year two. He's got good length and play strength and his football IQ is fantastic, I don't think he'll ever be a 10 sack type player but he's a very solid player who has the potential to be a starting fixture in this team for years to come.
Personally, I'd consider this a successful pick based on year one, I'm looking forward to seeing the improvement in year two.