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Oklahoma State lineman Jenkins a potential 1st-rounder

Oklahoma State's Teven Jenkins (73) is a potential first-round pick in the NFL Draft next month. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman]
Oklahoma State's Teven Jenkins (73) is a potential first-round pick in the NFL Draft next month. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman]

STILLWATER — Teven Jenkins’ NFL Draft stock never really caught fire.

It was more like a slow burn.

But now — less than seven weeks away from the draft — the 6-foot-6, 320-pound former Oklahoma State offensive tackle routinely is being talked about as a first-round pick.

“Offensive tackle is a tremendous position in this draft,” ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr. said in a conference call earlier this week. “The depth at offensive tackle goes well into day three.”

Jenkins, though, won't be around to see much of it, Kiper says.

Jenkins had long been considered, at worst, a mid-round pick. But as the offseason moved along, Jenkins’ name gradually kept climbing.

He offers versatility, having played left and right tackle over the past two seasons, but he’s most natural as a right tackle, which brings out some specific teams in need of one.

“He’s the right tackle that everybody’s gotta look at,” Kiper said. “He’s a guy the Bears could certainly use at 19. Kansas City could be a possibility there at 31.

“There are several teams looking for right tackles and several looking for left tackles, and for those teams beginning with Chicago, any of them could be in the market for Teven Jenkins.”

In his latest mock draft, Kiper had Buffalo picking Jenkins with the 30th pick, but Buffalo solidified its right tackle situation with the signing of Daryl Williams to a three-year contract on Friday.

But that does little to eliminate the depth of teams in need of offensive tackles with Jenkins’ skillset when the first round of the draft arrives on April 29.

Jenkins has long shown his athletic ability in an ideal NFL frame. This past season, he really seemed to tap into his nasty streak as well, which only boosted his value.

“I think it’s his ability to adjust to secondary moves, to maintain his balance and keep that frame between the defensive end and the quarterback,” Kiper said. “He’s got consistent performances. He’s gonna test off the charts in terms of work ethic and character aspects. On a scale of 1-10, he’s a 10.

“The fact that you put it all together, playing at a high level against good teams and good pass rushers at times — you even go back through several of the games, some of the sacks that came against him were coverage sacks or sacks where the guy is just chased. It wasn’t necessarily a guy beating Jenkins off the mark, beating him out of his stance.

“I think the consistency and then the talent adds up to a late first, at worst for Teven Jenkins, an early-to-mid-second round.”