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Michael Jenkins (running back)

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Michael Jenkins (running back)

Michael Jenkins
No. 27
Date of birth (1976-08-27) August 27, 1976
Place of birth Bethesda, Maryland
Career information
Status Retired
CFL status International
Position(s) RB
Height 5 ft 7 in (170 cm)
Weight 207 lb (94 kg)
College Arkansas
Career history
As player
20002001 Toronto Argonauts
2002 Houston Texans*
2003 Toronto Argonauts
2005 Montreal Alouettes
2005 Edmonton Eskimos
*Offseason and/or practice roster member only
Career highlights and awards
CFL All-Star 2001
CFL East All-Star 2001

Michael Jenkins (born August 27, 1976 in Bethesda, Maryland) is a former running back in the Canadian Football League.

Jenkins attended the University of Wyoming in 1997 and University of Arkansas from 1998-1999.


  • Amateur career 1
    • University of Wyoming 1.1
    • University of Arkansas 1.2
  • Professional career 2
    • Toronto Argonauts 2.1
  • Injury and Return to Football 3
    • Montreal Alouettes 3.1
    • Edmonton Eskimos 3.2
  • References 4

Amateur career

University of Wyoming

Michael Jenkins lettered at the University of Wyoming in 1997,[2] rushing for 605 yards and a team-high 10 touchdowns. He finished second on the team in rushing yards and was also second on the team in receiving yards, catching 25 passes for 341 yards and two touchdowns.[3]

University of Arkansas

Jenkins transferred from Wyoming to the University of Arkansas, redshirting the 1998 season.[4] Jenkins played in the 1999 season under Coach Houston Nutt. During his one season with the Razorbacks he finished third on the team in rushing with 224 yards and three touchdowns.[5]

Professional career

Toronto Argonauts

In 2000, Jenkins joined the Toronto Argonauts as a free agent. In his rookie year, he played all 18 games and gained 1,050 rushing yards on 183 carries with two rushing touchdowns complemented with 400 yards receiving. Upon the season's completion, he was voted the team's rookie of the year. With his small size and his large rushing numbers, comparisons between Jenkins and his head coach Pinball Clemons (who was a star running back during his playing days) naturally emerged.

During the 2001 season, Jenkins set an Argonauts team record for most rushing yards in a season with 1484 rushing yards on 271 carries and 8 touchdowns as well as 361 receiving yards and 5 touchdowns. Earlier in the season, there was great concern by the fans over whether Jenkins' running abilities would have been stifled because of the "pass-happy" philosophy of offensive co-ordinator John Jenkins. However, head coach Clemons put his coaching authority to use and called for a more balanced offensive attack combining the pass and running games to better utilize Michael Jenkins' game. The Football Reporters of Canada selected Jenkins as the winner of the 2001 John Candy Memorial Award, which is given to the Toronto Argonauts player of the year.[1]

Jenkins left the Argonauts in 2002 to sign with the Houston Texans, but he was released in training camp,[6] and he returned to the Argonauts in 2003. Unfortunately, he was not able to regain the form that he had when he first joined the team. After coming back from the NFL, Jenkins' weight increased. That, combined with an abductor/groin injury in the pre-season, and recurring ankle injuries factored into his decreased productivity. Despite those shortcomings throughout the season, Jenkins rushed for 195 yards in a game vs. the Edmonton Eskimos on August 17, 2003 and earned the CFL offensive player of the week award for the achievement.[7] For the season, Jenkins rushed for 814 yards on 156 carries with 6 rushing touchdowns, along with 316 yards receiving. Shortly thereafter, he had surgery on his injured ankles that hampered him during the season.

Injury and Return to Football

On May 17, 2004, Jenkins was released by the Argonauts, less than a month after the team signed free agent running back John Avery. Months later, Jenkins' agent, Danny Benjamin, alleged that his client would miss the entire 2004 CFL season because of the injured ankles and that the injury would not have been that serious had Jenkins not have gotten bad advice from Toronto's female trainer, Erin Brooks. Benjamin said "I have a problem with female trainers because they're female and they don't understand the male body. Their bodies are different."[8] Brooks laughed off the allegations by saying, "Injuries are injuries. Tissues are the same (in males and females)." Brooks was fired from the Argonauts in 2010, and won a settlement of $975,000 in 2012 after alleging in a lawsuit that she was terminated only because she was a woman.[8]

Montreal Alouettes

On February 18, 2005, Jenkins signed with the Montreal Alouettes,[6] but much of his time was split between the practice roster and the injured list. He was subsequently released by the Alouettes in July.[9]

Edmonton Eskimos

On August 22, 2005, Jenkins signed with the Edmonton Eskimos, and only played in one game on September 9, 2005 vs. the Calgary Stampeders. In that game, he rushed for 30 yards on 8 carries, combined with 1 reception for 11 yards.[10] Jenkins went on to win a Grey Cup championship with the Eskimos that year.[11]


  1. ^ a b "John Candy Memorial Award Winners." Retrieved December 16, 2014.
  2. ^ "Cowboy Traditions: Cowboy Lettermen." Retrieved June 17, 2014.
  3. ^ "1997 Wyoming Cowboys Stats." Retrieved July 14, 2014.
  4. ^ "JC receiver decides to pass up spring." Log Cabin Democrat, January 12, 1999. Retrieved June 24, 2014.
  5. ^ "1999 Arkansas Razorbacks Stats." Retrieved June 16, 2014.
  6. ^ a b "Michael Jenkins Chooses Montreal: Veteran Running Back Signs Two-Year Deal." Marketwired, February 18, 2005. Retrieved July 17, 2014.
  7. ^ "Jenkins snags CFL offensive award".  
  8. ^ a b Westhead, Rick. "Athletic therapist claimed she was fired by Toronto Argos because she’s a woman.", January 21, 2012. Retrieved June 16, 2014.
  9. ^ "Michael Jenkins." Retrieved December 16, 2014.
  10. ^ Huntington, Jonathan (2005-09-07). "Running scared?".  
  11. ^ "93rd Grey Cup, November 27, 2005." Retrieved December 16, 2014.
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