Photo credit: Icon Sportwire
Author: Jon Kuzma
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When we evaluate the safety position we’re looking at players who primarily defend the pass. Yeah some strong safeties will step into the box and be very good at tackling. However if you truly want to be a great defensive back you have to create turnovers by intercepting passes.
Over the past year Eddie Jackson has been the best at that and he’s very good at creating opportunities for his team. A lot of guys get lost back there but Jackson knows how to read the play so well and you do that by watching the quarterback’s eyes. Whenever a QB drops back they have to see their target before they can deliver the football. So from a safety’s standpoint you can anticipate where the ball is going by focusing on your keys. Eddie Jackson also does a great job of identifying the formation, knowing where each team’s superstars are lined up, and assessing any potential threats. There’s so much information to process before the ball is snapped but Jackson does it better than almost anyone. Ed Reed and Earl Thomas are similar because they were also ball hawks. If Jackson can maintain this amazing pace then he could be mentioned in the same discussion with Reed and Thomas but it’s about doing it year-in and year-out consistently before Jackson gets to that point. Regardless he’s the cream of the crop of this current era and that’s still an outstanding achievement.
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Eddie Jackson is the NFL’s best safety.