The Ravens’ inaugural 1996 NFL Draft class was legendary, starting with two Hall of Famers in Jonathan Ogden and Ray Lewis.
The next pick after them? That would be second-round cornerback DeRon Jenkins.
Jenkins didn’t have as much success on the football field, but found a second career from another love of his: home restoration.
Jenkins is now the host of HGTV’s “Flip or Flop Nashville,” where he and ex-girlfriend Page Turner team up to purchase homes in need of help and restore them for a profit. The show is in its first season.
The Ravens drafted the Tennessee product and plugged him into a defense that struggled in the franchise’s early years. Jenkins became a full-time starter in his fourth and final season with the Ravens.
In 1998, while still with Baltimore, Jenkins bought his first home, which needed a lot of work. Jenkins decided to roll up his sleeves and take on the restoration himself.
“I really had no idea what I was doing,” Jenkins told HGTV.com. “I just came up with some ideas of how to finish out the basement and add a bathroom, and I added a room for a pool table. Before I knew it, I renovated this home. And so that was always in my back pocket.”
After leaving the Ravens, Jenkins went on to play one season with the San Diego Chargers, then another back home with the Tennessee Titans in 2001, which is where he would eventually put down his roots.
“After my seven-year career in the NFL, I still had the passion to renovate, to make something older look beautiful and new again,” Jenkins told HGTV.com’s Lauren Oster. “And I was in Nashville. And I love this city. And so I decided to make this city beautiful.”
Jenkins became a licensed renovator and founded his own company. Since then, he’s been renovating houses throughout Nashville and Atlanta along with Turner. The two are now exes, but that only adds to the fun they have on the show.
“We work off of each other really well,” Turner said. “I know exactly what makes him tick, he knows exactly what makes me tick and we get all the work done.”
“And we also know what pushes each other’s buttons,” Jenkins added.
The pair appeared on “The Today Show” Monday morning to give some quick Spring restoration tips.