CB Janoris "Jackrabbit" Jenkins -- July 26, 2019
Q: So howís this mentoring of the young flock you have? Howís it going?
A: Itís going good so far. Theyíre paying attention to details, theyíre taking the notes down, and theyíre just ready to play.
Q: Are you enjoying it? Do you have to be on your Ps and Qs even more to make sure you know what to tell them?
A: I just go out and ball. I let them pick my brain when they want to, and if I see them messing up, I pick them up a little bit. Other than that, they seem like theyíre ready to me, and I can just lead by example.
Q: Do you feel like with all these young guys around that you need to maybe assert yourself a little bit more, rather than them just ask you?
A: Of course, you have to assert yourself more. You never know what theyíre thinking, these are young guys. So, the more you can talk with them and conversate with them, just about football, and not only football, life, on and off the field Ė just show them how to be a pro, and theyíre going to be pretty good.
Q: Are you embracing that? What part of that do you enjoy doing?
A: Just being around them, just having them come up to me and have conversations about football. I tell them every day, just pay attention to details, make sure you take the right notes, and just stay focused.
Q: Have you ever been asked to be in a role like this?
A: Iíve never been asked, but I always played this role when I was at Florida Ė had that one national championship. When I got to North Alabama, I did the same thing. So, itís nothing new, itís just Ė Iím not the guy that likes to talk, I like to play football. If you canít follow a leader that likes to play football, then you have a problem.
Q: What has (DeAndre) Baker shown you so far on the field? What is it you see from him as a player?
A: As a player, I can tell that heís smart, I can tell that heís been studying film, I can tell that heís taken leadership, taken mentorship roles just looking up to guys like myself. Heís in the film room every day studying, heís always on time, and we always say in the DB room that there is no such thing as a dumb question. You can always ask a question, whether itís the smallest questionóit might be a dumb questionóbut like we say, no question is a dumb question, and I think thatís going to help him along the way.
Q: Did Sterling (Shepard) get hurt on that play yesterday where you guys went for the ball together? There was a play where you guys kind of banged into each other.
A: I donít know, I just know that after that play I didnít see him anymore. So, when I saw him in the locker room I asked him what happened, and he explained it to me. Sterling Ė stay strong bro.
Q: Would you say he hit his thumb on the ground as you were going down?
A: He was catching the ball, but it kind of hit the ground, and I guess it got on the ground, and he got up and went and told coach I guess.
Q: When you look at Baker, Heís very physical. Is there a fine line between being physical in college and the NFL?
A: Yeah, I told him you could be physical but you got a certain level to be physical because you donít want to get up there and be too physical and have guys push you off and throw you by and stuff like that. So we getting that under control right now.
Q: We have been asking about Baker, but what about Julian Love what do you see from him so far?
A: A guy that can play multiple positions, very smart, got a knack for the ball and just likes to study.
Q: Coaches can challenge pass interference now, what do you think of that?
A: I think itís awesome, it gives us the opportunity to challenge the play, whether itís a good play or a bad play because in the NFL every game is won by 3-7 points at the most, so I think itís great.
Q: You think itís great if your coaches can challenge it to get it flipped if you get called for it. But, what if you donít get called for one on the field and a coach challenges it and then you get a flag for pass interference.
A: Iíve got to live with it, thatís something I got to live with.
Q: Thereís a chance that youíll be the only starter in the secondary who finished the year back there last year. How hard is it to get so many moving parts together and on the same page?
A: Itís tough but you got older guys like (Antoine) Bethea, you know heís been in the system already, (Jabrill) Peppers, he understands football and heís been around a long time so for guys like that it just helps us even more because everybody played a lot of ball and we just got to teach the young fellows.
Q: Have you seen (Antoine) Bethea, like you talk about him knowing the system and heís played for (James) Bettcher before. Have you seen him during the spring and summer even with you, helping you kind of understand parts of the scheme more or kind of taking on that player/coach role and all?
A: Yeah, He knows the nicks and knacks of the defense, something I didnít know when Coach (James) Bettcher got here. You know I just knew the defense. But now I know the ins and outs and just those small pieces I can get away with and canít get away with.
Q: What are your conversations like with Corey Ballentine, obviously he comes here as a rookie with a very unusual situation with the tragedy that happened, so what discussions do you have with him along those lines?
A: Man, youíre here to play football, you canít worry about any outside distractions. Your main focus should be football and football only, itís just when you show up to work make sure you focus on football. He understands that, he understands what happened. He canít take it back so just come here every day and work.
Q: Thatís a pretty hard thing to go through what he went through, having one of his best friends killed like that. Did you talk to him about just getting through that or anything?
A: Yeah, I mean you got to understand things happen in life. Somethings you canít control, somethings you can and what I told him is ďI feel sorry for you, you should feel bad as well but you werenít in a position to handle that situation or help him out because you had to come up here and play football so just come in and focus.Ē
Q: You had a similar tragedy happen in your life last year did you draw on that experience when you were talking to him?
A: I mean I shared it with him, but you know I try to stay away from it because I donít want any distractions between him and I or anyone else on the team, so I just talked to him about that.
Q: What do you think about him as a player?
A: As a player oh, he can play. He has a nose for the ball. You can tell heís been coached very well by a very good coach, whoever that may be because heís technically sound and heís aggressive.