While the 49ers may have given up three first round picks for Trey Lance, that doesn’t mean they missed out on acquiring first round talent in the draft. Second rounder Drake Jackson has stacked good days this summer and that continued against the Vikings. Right now he is looking like a potential steal at pick 61.
This play in particular stood out from Saturday’s game.
DeMeco Ryans dials up an effective pressure here by running a stunt with Alex Barrett & Drake Jackson while blitzing Womack from the slot to free up Jackson as he loops into the A gap— Jordan Elliott (@JLeeElliott) August 22, 2022
Jackson slips but never gives up on the play and his effort leads to a bad pass that is picked pic.twitter.com/07VAkqruqB
DeMeco Ryans was asked about how Jackson was able to recover and still affect the play on Monday.
“Yeah, Drake is a very unique athlete from that standpoint where you see some guys who may hit the ground or get tripped up some type of way. And they’re done, they’re out of the play, it’s taking him forever to get up. But Drake is unique in a way that he still finds a way, like even if he’s falling, he’s still working his way to the quarterback and for him to slip on that pressure and still affect the quarterback. Most guys, they don’t have that type of athletic ability. And that’s what I call God-given ability that some guys have and Drake, he has that.
It’s not something that you coach or teach. It’s just something he has uniquely within himself to be able to be effective. And he’s always in a play because of his ability to still maneuver, make plays, even when you think he should be out of it. In some kind of way he pops up and he’s still able to make a play, so it’s fun to watch. It’s interesting. It’s fun to watch and it’s fun to see him really grow this past week. As far as his physicality, his strain in the run game and also him being able to affect the quarterback was good to see.”
Part of what is so encouraging about Jackson’s progress is that he’s also making plays like this against the run.
Here's the subsequent play from #49ers' Drake Jackson. He's already letting the rest of the NFL know that they can't block him one-on-one with a TE/WR.— Akash Anavarathan (@akashanav) August 21, 2022
Comes flying off the edge to make the tackle on the running back. His high motor's flashing already too. pic.twitter.com/R2bTNKjGSz
“You earn the right to rush the passer by stopping the run,” Ryans said. “And he’s done that.
Jackson was PFF’s highest graded 49ers defensive player against the Vikings at 88.5. If he can sustain that level of play into the regular season, the 49ers’ defense is going to be an absolute wrecking crew at the line of scrimmage.
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