Bears right guard Teven Jenkins was informed that Pro Football Focus gave him the highest grade (91.1) of any NFL offensive lineman this past weekend for his performance against the Saints. But he won't let it go to his head.
"I just try to come into the building and be the same guy I am day-in, day-out," Jenkins said. "I appreciate all the love that I'm getting from everybody. But I try to stay level-headed and not get too big-headed about anything."
An even-keeled approach has benefitted Jenkins, who has excelled while starting the last two games at right guard in place of the injured Nate Davis. Jenkins has been particularly effective lining up alongside rookie right tackle Darnell Wright. Both possess size, athleticism and a nasty demeanor.
"I would say I do feel like I'm in a groove," Jenkins said. "I'm starting to get more comfortable where I'm at and starting to play next to Darnell, so understanding what he wants and what he needs and playing off each other.
"I feel like I'm getting my steps down right, hand placement's good, rolling people off the ball. I'm just moving people A to B, just stuff that how I want to play [is] showing up."
Jenkins has yo-yoed between both guard positions. He performed well at right guard last year, appearing in 13 games with 11 starts. After the Bears signed Davis in free agency, Jenkins was switched to left guard and worked there throughout training camp but missed the first four games of the season with a calf injury.
Activated for Week 5, he subbed in at left guard against the Commanders after center Lucas Patrick exited with an injury and Cody Whitehair moved from left guard to center. Jenkins started the following week at left guard versus the Vikings before switching back to the right side when Davis was injured.
"I wouldn't say it's easy," Jenkins said. "A lot of people do it in the league. Just be able to do it at a high level, that's the challenging part. I just like to play freely. That's the thing that's been stopping me, really. It's been trying to think too much and stop trusting myself. Once I got out of my own head, I started to play better."
The Bears have rushed for at least 156 yards in three of Jenkins' four starts.
"Tev's playing well," said offensive coordinator Luke Getsy. "I think it reflects that in our run game. We're finding success down that avenue. He's firing off the rock. He's playing physical. He's finishing as good as anybody on the field. All that stuff has been really good, really positive stuff for him to continue to build on."