VAUGHT: Jenkins thankful for Brooks, Petri

Ventrell Jenkins thought he appreciated what coach Rich Brooks and defensive line coach Rick Petri did for him while he was at Kentucky. Once he got into the Buffalo Bills minicamp, though, his appreciation for the UK coaches soared.

"The minicamp went great," said the 285-pound defensive tackle, who was the Liberty Bowl MVP last season. "All the techniques and things I learned from coach Petri carried over and made the transition so much easier. The playbook was basically the same as ours at Kentucky. It was just a little different terminology that I had to adapt to, but it wasn't that hard."

Jenkins signed with the Bills as a free agent and will report back to training camp July 24. He says he's been "working hard daily and staying focused" on the challenge he'll face then in hopes of earning a roster spot.

"I looked at the roster and what players they had like me before I signed," he said. "That was the biggest thing in making my decision about where I wanted to play. Once I got there, the playbook was just an extra plus for me. I had no idea it would be that similar to what I already knew.

"I think they need help at my position. That's what I am looking at as I prepare for camp. I think I really do have a real good chance to make the team if I get my work done like I should."

Jenkins went to see his former coaches when he returned to Kentucky. The UK staff was busy with camp and doing the same things Jenkins says has made UK successful.

"They were excited to see me and I was excited to see them," Jenkins said. "Coach Brooks and coach Petri got me ready for this opportunity. All the things I learned from coach Petri carried right over to the NFL. I was so far ahead of most other rookies because of all the drills and things we had been doing for four years with coach Petri.

"Coach Brooks' style of coaching is kind of like the NFL. He got me prepared for what NFL coaches are like, and that was a huge help."
With recruiting season heating up, there's no better time to join Kentucky Sports Report, the finest collection of Kentucky fans anywhere. And be sure and join KSR's twitter community, too--it's free and keeps you in touch with the latest KSR and UK news whether you're attached to your keyboard, or just have your phone available. Join now at

AllWildcats Top Stories