Jenkins, an All-Pro defensive tackle, received a $9.175 million signing bonus in the deal that keeps him in Carolina through 2009. Jenkins, who went to the Pro Bowl last year, was signed through 2004 but the Panthers made it a priority to lock him into a long-term deal early. A second-round draft pick out of Maryland in 2001, Jenkins ranked third among NFC defensive tackles last season with a career-high seven sacks. He also had 60 tackles.
He is considered one of the cornerstones of Carolina's defense, which ranked second in the NFL last season. Defensive end Julius Peppers, the other cornerstone, is signed through 2008. Defensive end Mike Rucker and defensive tackle Brentson Buckner are both signed through 2007.