Sunday, September 25, 2022

Unpacking Future Packers: No. 5 Drake Jackson

The Unpacking Future Packers Countdown is a countdown to 100 prospects that could be selected by the Green Bay Packers in the 2022 NFL Draft.

The Green Bay Packers need to improve depth behind pass-rushing duo Ration Gary and Preston Smith. Luckily for Brian Gutekunst and the Packers the 2022 NFL Draft is rich on talent on the sidelines.

There’s an edge rusher the Packers can target early in the 2022 NFL Draft drake jackson, The USC Edge Rusher unpacking checks in at No. 5 on the Future Packers countdown.

A four-star recruit, Jackson burst onto the scene as a freshman. The California native recorded 11.5 tackles, 5.5 sacks and three pass deflections to make up for the loss in 2019. In just six games in 2020, Jackson recorded 5.5 tackles, two sacks and one interception to make up for the loss.

In nine starts this past season, Jackson recorded eight tackles, five sacks and one interception to make up for the loss.

Pro Football Focus On Jackson’s progress:

“Before his late injury, Jackson proved he had taken an important next step in his development. He improved his 66.6 pass-rushing grade to 87.7 in 2021 as a sophistication.”

With 6-3,273-pound-long arms (looks like Gumby), Jackson looks like a prototypical edge rusher. He has a quick first step with a long jump that chews up the grass and he has explosive upfield speed. He has the flexibility to dip and bend the edge. Jackson plays with a low pad level and a natural balance to work through the contact. He shows a great finish for the quarterback once he wins the corner. He is able to open up the crowded streets for himself by getting aggressive tackles sloping out.

,His bending and flexibility are undoubtedly his greatest strengths,” said PFF’s Anthony Tresh. “He has a nasty speed dip and that’s because of the ghost’s gait.”

from athletics den brugler On Jackson’s ability as a pass-rusher:

“While his initial move may have been better, Jackson sprints with excellent flexibility, length and arc acceleration as well as a tendency to catch the corner or fire back inside.”

As a run defender, Jackson shows excellent range. He is a high effort player and that motor shows with his ability to chase down the ball carrier from behind. Overall, Jackson’s playing prowess has led to his inconsistencies as a run defender. A team will groom him for his near-rushing chops and we will have to be patient, as he develops against the run.

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Jackson is a fluid athlete and seems comfortable landing in space. At USC’s Pro Day, Jackson posted a three-cone time of 7.09 and a short shuttle time of 4.28.

“Drake Jackson’s biggest strength is the edge-of-the-edge athleticism when reaching quarterback,” said Troy’s Reigns editor Ivan Desai. “His athleticism allowed Todd Orlando to send him into coverage, of course. Orlando sent him out too much and didn’t let him do what he did best (Pass Rush, of course), but it at least It showed that he had athleticism where he could be used in a variety of roles like in that situation.

It’s worth noting that the Packers hosted Jackson on a pre-draft trip. Tom Silverstein of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported the visit.

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fit with packers

Jackson checks all the boxes. He is a good athlete. He plays a premium position and he has just turned 21.

USC Edge Rusher has all the equipment and it wouldn’t be surprising to see Gutkunst pick up a talented Edge Rusher with the 28th overall pick. It’s more likely that he goes on the second day, but Jackson yells Gutkenst in a first-round pick.

,He is likely to be a designated pass-rusher to begin with,” Tresh said. “He never really grew as a run defender and lacked playing in that aspect throughout his career. He still stands tall as a pass rusher because of his tools.”

The Packers have their own two starting outside linebackers, along with Gary and Smith. Now, Gutkunst needs to add depth to the quality behind that pairing.

Adding Jackson will give Joe Barry an athletic and talented Edge Rush with all the tools to be a game-changer to the next level. Jackson has the frame and flexibility to loosen pockets on a Sunday.

from Brugler,

“Jackson is a twitched-up speed rusher with the upside to be disruptive in the NFL if he can develop his playing power and arm/power moves without sacrificing athleticism. He has the upside of an impressive NFL starter, but He has work to do if he wants to reach that level.”

If Jackson were to land at Green Bay he could serve as a designated pass-rusher during his rookie season. Given his age and skill-set, the USC edge rusher could be seen as a future running mate for Gary.

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Nation World News Desk
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