Here are give things Giants fans should know about Jackson.
History with several Giants
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Everyone knows Jackson has a history with safety Logan Ryan. The two are friends outside of football and played together while with the Tennessee Titans. “When I came in, [Ryan] is one of the guys I leaned on a lot to help me out. I told him I appreciate him more than he knows. He was there for me, the big brother that you need,” Jackson said of Ryan last year. But Jackson has a history with more than just Ryan. He’s also a former teammate of defensive lineman Austin Johnson and should the Giants choose to re-sign him, running back Dion Lewis as well. In college, Jackson played alongside defensive lineman Leonard Williams.
Former first round pick
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The Titans selected Jackson in the first round (No. 18 overall) of the 2017 NFL draft out of USC. As USC, Jackson was Pac-12 Defensive Freshman of the Year (2014), Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year (2016), Consensus All-American (2016) and two-time First Team All-Pac-12 (2015, 2016). He also won the Jim Thorpe Award (2016) and Jet Award (2016).
Former track star
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From an early age through college, Jackson was a track star who earned multiple awards and accolades. Jackson won the 2015 Pac-12 championship in the long jump and was a member of USC’s 4×100 relay team, which came in fourth place in the 2015 NCAA championships. He also finished 10th in the long jump finals during the 2016 U.S. Track and Field Olympic trials (7.83 meters). At the 2017 NFL Combine in Indianapolis, that track history greatly benefitted Jackson, who ran a 4.39 40-yard dash.
Didn’t enjoy football until high school
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Jackson admits he wasn’t a “football guy” until he got to high school. At that point, he discovered Bo Jackson and Deion Sanders and marveled at their ability to play multiple sports. As a basketball player, Jackson also drew inspiration from Allen Iverson. Eventually, Jackson came to love the game of football. “I never thought I had to prove I was a football player and not just a track athlete,” Jackson once said through the Alliance Management Group. “I am a football player, and that’s where my heart is.”
Quality return man
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In addition to playing cornerback, Jackson has also served as both a kick and punt returner at the NFL level. In 46 career games (41 starts), Jackson has returned 53 punts for 464 yards and 27 kickoffs for 601 yards. However, that production has fallen off a bit in recent years. “He was a fairly effective punt returner in 2017 and 2018 but had some big hiccups early on in 2019 and had the job taken from him,” Mike Moraitis of Titans Wire told Giants Wire. “Injuries are another concern. Really wasn’t all the way back last year when he did return and he was awful, no two ways about it.”
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