2019 Raiders Draft Prospect Profile
Name: Joe Jackson
Position: Defensive End
School: The University of Miami
Weight: 265 pounds
Round Projection: 2-3
Granted, many twitchy prospects attempt to win solely on explosion. However, Jackson features an outstanding bull rush. First, he generates excellent force via speed. Then, behind his appropriate pad level, he drives the tackle into the backfield. Normally, a power move requires phenomenal power. Yet, the former Miami standout wins with the ability to convert speed to power. More importantly, Jackson varies his moves and will set up the tackle. By planting the seed of doubt in his head, the tackle will expect a bull and Jackson will beat him wide instead. Although blessed with an angular frame, Jackson generates very good bend when gaining the corner.
With three-down ability, Jackson excels at setting the edge. He forces perimeter runs to string out wider, right into the linebackers. In addition, Jackson uses a quick dip inside to defeat the tackle and make the play himself in the backfield. Over time, he became fundamentally disciplined, not biting on misdirection.
From the snap, Jackson wins with the first step. With the ability to win, getting feet parallel, he flies by the block. Meanwhile, the Hurricane edge shows the ability to break down and not overrun the plan, vacating his spot, leaving space. Moreover, Jackson closes on the play in a hurry, with little wasted motion.
Despite possessing an above-average bull rush, Jackson still need to add a little power to his game. On screen and perimeter plays, he will need to disengage quicker with force.
Thankfully, Jackson grew into his frame. During his stay in Coral Gables, reps helped him improve his technique. Using outstanding hands, he will secure the stop without any extra yardage. Additionally, he generates his share of fumbles when rushing the passer. Jackson’s reach can slide around the blocker to dislodge the ball.
In December, Paul Guenther mentioned that the Raiders initially drafted Arden Key as a situational pass rusher. Yet, due to trades and releases, Key was forced into starting duty. Currently, he does not present as a full-time end. As a result, Jackson’s strength, closing speed and repertoire makes him a steal. Under those circumstances, Jackson could force Key into his suited passing down role. In essence, having Jackson to hold down one side, and signing a veteran edge, helps Key. Moreover, Jackson presents as a better all-around player, at this point. The Raiders need all the edge help they can find. More importantly, getting younger allows for growth.