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Drake Jackson 2022 NFL Draft Profile

Drake Jackson 2022 NFL Draft Profile

The 2022 NFL Draft will be a great event for teams to start building for their future. Here is the Drake Jackson 2022 NFL Draft Profile.

Drake Jackson Background

Position: Edge Rusher

Size: 6-foot-4, 250 pounds

Class: Junior

2021 stats: 37 total tackles, 8 tackles for loss, 5 sacks, 1 pass defended, 1 forced fumble, 1 fumble recovery

Jackson put himself on the radar for the NFL after a great freshman season and has seen a decent amount of success since. Now, he is entering the NFL Draft.

After being a four-star recruit out of high school, Jackson decided to stay in-state to play for USC. He impressed right away for the Trojans, as he had 11.5 tackles for loss and 5.5 sacks. His play helped lead USC to an 8-5 record and an appearance in the Holiday Bowl. In a shortened 2020 season, Jackson tallied 5.5 tackles for loss and two sacks in six games played. The Trojans finished the season 5-1. In 2021, Jackson totaled eight tackles for loss and five sacks. USC struggled on the year and had just an 8-4 record.

Following the 2021 season, Jackson declared for the draft. He is currently projected to be a third to fifth-round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft.

Drake Jackson Strengths

Jackson is an athletic edge rusher. He has a quick first step and keeps that pace going, demonstrating solid speed. His ability to win with speed is apparent. On top of this, he has solid lateral mobility as well. He also has shown solid flexibility to be able to bend around the edge and get to the quarterback.

He has a great motor as a pass rusher. Jackson works tirelessly to get to the quarterback. There are times where he will make a play after a play has gone on for more than a few seconds. This motor carries over against the run as well, as Jackson shows good pursuit and can make plays on ball carriers downfield.

As a 3-4 outside linebacker, Jackson was dropped into coverage with some frequency. He showed adequate coverage ability. In the NFL, his best fit is as a 3-4 outside linebacker, so his ability to move and cover is way more important to him than other edge rushers in the class.

Drake Jackson Weaknesses

Jackson has to add more play strength to hold up at the NFL level. The good news is that Jackson looks like adding muscle is a real possibility with his frame. The lack of play limits his ability to rush against power and to be effective against the run.

A lot of times in college Jackson won purely off of his athleticism. He needs to add more pass-rushing moves and counters in order to be a more effective pass rusher, especially given his strength limitations. If he can add to his moves, Jackson could be more productive as a pro in pass-rushing situations.

As mentioned, his best fit in the NFL is for a 3-4 team. He struggles to shed, so allowing him to come off the edge is ideal. Teams who run 4-3 defenses will likely not be interested, as he will have to add plenty of muscle to really fit into that system.

Projected Draft Range: Third Round Pick-Fifth Round Pick

 

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