Jenkins, who has been called a “Rising Star” in the NFL, is indeed a constellation comprised of humility, discipline, drive and uncompromising faith.
Malcolm Jenkins, a native of Piscataway, New Jersey, is the eldest of the Jenkins brothers, Martin and Myles. Firmly rooted in the values instilled by his parents and keeping his eyes focused on his goals, it is no surprise that he has enjoyed success at every level of sports in which he has participated. Jenkins played high school football at Piscataway High School in Piscataway Township, NJ, where he was a three-year starter who helped to lead his team to three consecutive State Championships. He played both wide receiver and defensive back and won All-state honors his senior year. Jenkins also excelled at track, winning the State title in the 400 meters, third place in the 200 meters, as a junior and third place in the hurdles, as a senior at the State meet. To avoid the distractions of recruiting, Jenkins verbally committed to The Ohio State University before his senior high school season, selecting Ohio over Rutgers, Virginia Tech and others.
Jenkins naturally emerged as a leader of the Nation’s top-rated defense on the field. On the field, Jenkins’ discipline and athleticism was recognized nationally by the distinguished Jim Thorpe committee, and in his senior year he received the Jim Thorpe Award, an honor bestowed to the nation’s best defensive back. Jenkins was the 2nd award winner from Ohio State in the 23 years of Thorpe award recipients.
When asked how he felt to be among the ranks of Thorpe awardees, like Deion Sanders and Charles Woodson, Jenkins told the Associated Press,"… to look at all the rest of these guys, it's just amazing and extremely humbling for me just to be able to be mentioned in the same breath with these guys." Jenkins graduated from The Ohio State University receiving his Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree in Communications.
Jenkins’ performance at Ohio State University left a lasting impression. During the NFL Draft, cornerback’s became a popular discussion in sports news reports and among NFL professionals, as they watched the potential first-round draft pick Jenkins and speculated on if he would be drafted as a corner, the position he played for four years as a Buckeye, or a safety.
In the 2009 NFL Draft, the Saints selected Malcolm Jenkins in the first round, 14th overall. Jenkins was the first cornerback to be taken by the Saints in the first round since Oregon's Alex Molden went at No. 11 in the 1996 NFL Draft. On August 9, 2009 the Saints agreed to terms with Jenkins on a five-year, $19 million contract. Jenkins started his first career game due to injuries to Jabari Greer and Tracy Porter during week 11 against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He finished the game recording seven tackles and his first career interception off of Buccaneers quarterback Josh Freeman.
Jenkins received substantial playing time during his rookie season. It is fitting that Jenkins is a member of the New Orleans Saints, a team recognized for positively contributing to the recovery of a City that was devastated by the worst natural and man-made disaster in U.S. history. In 2009, his rookie season, Jenkins helped to lead the team to a historic Super Bowl win, the first in the franchises' 40 year history.
For the 2010 season, working hard in every position assigned to him by the New Orleans Saints coaching staff, Jenkins smoothly transitioned from Cornerback to Free Safety originally with the intent of backing up starting Free Safety Darren Sharper; he became a starter after Sharper was placed on the Physically Unable to Perform ("PUP") list to start the season, and continued to receive substantial playing time even after Sharper returned from his injury.
In 2010, Jenkins started 15 games, 12 at the Free Safety position and three at Cornerback. In the fourth quarter of a 2010 Thanksgiving Classic game versus the Dallas Cowboys, Jenkins came from behind to strip the ball from Cowboys receiver Roy Williams. The Saints were losing at that point of the game, but came back to win the game, 30-27. Saints coach Sean Payton said Jenkins performed "one of those plays that inspires everybody on the team". Jenkins was named NFC Defensive Player of the Week for his performance. Two weeks later, Jenkins intercepted two passes from St. Louis Rams quarterback Sam Bradford, returning one of them 96 yards for his first NFL touchdown. Jenkins was again named NFC Defensive Player of the Week. Jenkins gained praise and accolades from both his coaches and teammates for the transition, and twice earned the selection of NFC Defensive Player of the Week.
During the 2011 season, the transition was finalized with Jenkins starting all 15 games he played in at Free Safety. In his first full season at safety, Jenkins ranked second on the team with a career-high 97 tackles (66 solo) while also registering one sack, 11 pass defenses, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery.
In 2012, Jenkins was voted by teammates as one of three season-long team defensive captains along with safety Roman Harper and linebacker Jonathan Vilma. Started all 13 games he appeared in at free safety, missing the final three contests due to a hamstring injury and Finished tied for third on the team with 95 tackles (70 solo) five passes defensed, one blocked field goal and an interception returned 55 yards for a touchdown.
Jenkins is as dedicated and focused to succeed on the field as he is off the field, as he leads the charge, as Chairman, of his namesake charity, The Malcolm Jenkins Foundation. It is his hope that through his foundation and off-the-field endeavors, that a positive difference will be made in the lives of youth, future generations and the communities in which they live. Jenkins currently resides with his wife, Morrisa in New Orleans, LA.