Jernigan is somewhat of an enigma. A player that can be a disruptive force in the middle of the defensive line, Jernigan is also somewhat slow coming off the snap. Jernigan has quick hands and excellent strength, yet needs work on his technique.
Despite his weaknesses, there is no denying that Jernigan is a potentially disrupting force in the middle of an NFL defensive line. Despite routinely taking up multiple blockers, he consistently makes plays in the backfield, with five sacks and fourteen tackles for a loss in the last two plus years. Jernigan appears to be someone that could fit in nicely as a 3-4 defensive end, eating up blockers and allowing the linebackers to make plays. Otherwise, he may profile as one of the rare defensive tackles that can also rush the quarterback in a 4-3 defense.
Jernigan is projected to be a late first to early second round draft pick at this point. However, as someone that needs refinement to his game, he may slide back a bit. Should Jernigan end up with a team willing to be patient and work on developing his technique and fundamentals, he could turn into that disruptive force at the next level. Conversely, on a team that rushes him into the lineup, he could become someone that never truly taps into his talent.