Originally written on This Given Sunday  |  Last updated 4/13/12

Yesterday, I addressed how I thought teams should handle off-field problems of players and prospects. In that piece, I mentioned that Janoris Jenkins would likely be the poster-boy for prospects with potential character issues. It would seem that I made an accurate assessment.

It was reported by Albert Breer that Jenkins continued his drug use even after he chose to move to North Alabama instead of entering the supplemental draft last season.

Jenkins' story goes to the heart of this particular problem. Janoris Jenkins has exhibited that playing football isn't very important to him -- or at least not as important as his drugs are.

Here's my line of reasoning that leads me to that conclusion. Drug use jeopardizes a player's playing career. If the player tests positive for drugs enough times, that player can be suspended or kicked out of the NFL. Even after Jenkins was dismissed from Florida, he continued to use drugs. Simply put, he has showed in the past that he'll continue to use drugs even after that drug use has begun to effect his playing status. If I'm an NFL general manager, I'm staying away from Jenkins until at least the 2nd round.

All that being said, Jenkins is a very talented player, and he is worth the risk of a 2nd or 3rd round pick. He represents an extreme case of high risk, high reward. There seems to be a significant chance that he'll be a complete flop in the NFL, especially considering his past. On the other hand, there is the possibility that he can clean his drug use up enough to allow himself to be a very successful player in the NFL. No one is doubting whether he has the talent to play at the NFL level. We're all just doubting whether he can stay clean enough, long enough to be effective in the NFL.

Here's a statement made by Jenkins' agent that responds to such criticism of Jenkins:

"Our talks with league GMs and scouts have been overwhelmingly positive. Most of these scouts believe that Janoris is the top cover corner in the draft and have been impressed with the way he has handled himself through the pre-draft process, from the Senior Bowl to the combine to team visits. He's been open and honest about his mistakes and has learned from them. He has demonstrated that he's fully dedicated to fulfilling his dreams of being a professional football player."

He may be dedicated to the process of becoming an NFL player, but a few clean months doesn't demonstrate that a person will remain clean, especially with millions of dollars on the line.


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