Nov. 14, 2006
Tallahassee, Fla. – Michael Jennings, a Florida State track and field athlete from 1999-2002 can now be found on the depth chart for the New York Giants of the NFL. Although he never played football in college, Jennings, an All-ACC honoree his junior year in the 200m and 400m and an ACC Champion in the 4x400m relay, used his speed and agility to launch a career in the NFL.
Jennings’ football career began as a rookie free agent with the San Francisco 49ers in 2002. After spending only a few months with the team, he was waived in August of 2002. He then went overseas where the Scottish Claymores picked him up as a fourth round draft pick in the NFL Europe Free Agent Draft in 2003. After participating in the NFLEL training camp that same year, Jennings did not make the team and when the 2004 camps came around, he participated in the Berlin Thunder’s training camp but was cut at the conclusion.
It was in 2004 when Michael Jennings got his first break in the NFL back home in the United States. After jumping around from the New England Patriots to the Baltimore Ravens from March to November of 2004, Jennings was signed to the New York Giants’ practice squad on Nov. 30, 2004. On January 7 of 2005 he was officially signed to the Giants’ roster.
However, history repeated itself and Jennings found himself allocated to NFL Europe where he played for the Berlin Thunder, the same team that cut him at the end of training camp the year before. During his time with the NFLEL, Michael played in nine games with seven starts and moved to third in the league with 546 receiving yards on 33 catches, a 16.5-yard average. He scored four touchdowns with the Thunder, one of which was a 70-yarder. In a game against the Cologne Centurions, he recorded the season high in receiving yards with 165. Jennings ended his first season as the fourth best in the NFL Europe with 546 receiving yards, 410 in kickoff returns and 31 rushing yards for a combined 987.
In his first season as a New York Giant, Michael Jennings appears as a third team wide receiver and has played in seven of the last nine games this season. He also participated in the preseason against the Baltimore Ravens in which he turned the game around for the Giants who were trailing by nine at the end of the third. Jennings returned a 52 yard punt for a touchdown and closed the gap to two points. A Giants field goal sealed the deal and New York won their first pre-season game 17 to 16.