When Mike Jenkins decided not to spend the majority of the offseason with the Dallas Cowboys to rehab his shoulder last summer, the writing was on the wall that 2012 would likely be his last season with the team.
No surprise ending here.
The Cowboys let him go into free agency and although it took nearly a month to find a home, Jenkins is heading out West after agreeing to a one-year deal with the Oakland Raiders.
Jenkins, one of two first-round picks (along with Felix Jones) by the Cowboys in 2008, went from a three-year starter from 2009-11 to a backup last year. The Cowboys signed Brandon Carr in free agency and then moved up in the first round to pick Morris Claiborne, creating an instant 1-2 punch at the cornerback position.
It left Jenkins on the outside looking in and while he never publicly complained about his situation, his absence from the Cowboys’ facility other than mandatory events such as minicamps and team functions suggested he wasn’t happy with his role, especially heading into a contract year.
Still bothered by the shoulder injury, which required rotator cuff surgery, Jenkins missed all of training camp and the first game of the season before returning to action in Week 2 against Seattle. However, Jenkins never had a major role last year, playing mostly in nickel and dime packages.
He made the Pro Bowl in 2009 as an alternate but never got back to that form. Jenkins showed some toughness in 2011 when he played through multiple nagging injuries, including a knee, neck and shoulder setbacks.
In Oakland, Jenkins is the second free-agent corner to sign in free agency along with Tracy Porter.
The Cowboys and Raiders will square off twice in 2013, including a preseason contest in Oakland in mid-August, followed by a regular-season game at Cowboys Stadium.
Editors note: Keep up with the 2013 Dallas Cowboys free agents by clicking below: