Thursday, September 16, 2010
Unlikely winner: Kelly Jennings vs. Gore
By Mike Sando
Kelly Jennings' open-field tackle on Frank Gore stood out as one of the more surprising visuals from Week 1 in the NFC West.
Jennings is a 5-foot-11, 180-pound cornerback. Gore is two inches shorter and nearly 40 pounds heavier.
The former teammates at the University of Miami remain friends, but Jennings once described an open-field encounter with Gore as a potential worst-case scenario. That's what made Jennings' aggressive, decisive tackle on Gore such an impressive feat.
"I tell you what, Kelly has been preparing himself since OTAs and I'll be the first to tell you, he had a great spring, kept getting better throughout camp and you can just see the guy really playing with as much confidence as I've ever seen him," teammate Jordan Babineaux said Wednesday.
Jennings is a fifth-year player entering the final year of his contract. His career bottomed out a couple years ago, but Jennings said newfound perspective has helped him get back on track. The Seahawks' new leadership felt good enough about Jennings this summer to trade incumbent starter Josh Wilson.
"He really cares about what he is doing," Babineaux said. "You really notice it in his game."
Not that Jennings is crowing about that take-down against Gore.
"One-on-one, if he has a change to run me over, I know he would definitely take the opportunity," Jennings said.