C Drake Jackson, Kentucky
HOMETOWN (HIGH SCHOOL): Versailles, KY (Woodford County)
247 RATING: .9371
POSITION RANK: 4
GAMES PLAYED/STARTED: 36/33
GAMES PLAYED/STARTED: 13/13
Drake Jackson Breakdown
Mr. Reliable returns to a line that loses just one player in the starting lineup, and he’s the glue that keeps the group together. Drake Jackson’s return to Kentucky puts the Wildcats in a great position to compete in the SEC East, and he brings a consistency that they’ll need to compete in their division.
When he wins, he wins early. Every block for him is about getting leverage early on his defender. Extremely quick feet and hands allow him to get in position before his man knows what to do, and he’s able to use that combination to reset his defenders hands with his own, and sink his hips to get his feet in better position to control his man. From there he can move his man out of their gap and create an opening for the running back behind him.
If it’s a defender with length, he struggles to get his hands on them and also recover if they blow him back. He wins on the little things, but an elite talent lined up across from him can give him trouble and put him in a tough position. But again, he’s going to get his hands involved, doing his best to knock the defenders hands off his frame to get into better position.
Pulling in space isn’t his strong suit, but he’s good at reaching and sealing defenders in adjacent gaps. He works hard to get to his man or even to the second level to take away another potential tackler from the play.
There aren’t many concerns with Jackson’s game, even if he doesn’t have elite abilities in certain areas. He understands what he’s good at, and he’ll put himself in positions where he can utilize those skills and find a way to beat his defender. His quickness in short spaces helps him win early and often, which creates chances for the skill players in Kentucky’s offense.