Darius Jackson

DFW 2016 ROOKIE PROFILE: RB Darius Jackson

RB Darius Jackson – Senior / 6-1 / 220 – EASTERN MICHIGAN

  • Selected as a Doak Walker Award Candidate in 2015 (not a finalist)
  • Great size to be an every-down back
  • Tremendous athlete — Jackson once broad jumped 11 feet in high school and was a star baseball (centerfielder), basketball and football player in high school
  • Has a good stutter-step to set up defenders and plants quickly
  • Runs hard, constantly looks to get up-field with good vision
  • Big enough to punish smaller defenders, which Jackson will do
  • Explodes through the hole and Jackson is plenty capable of taking the ball the distance and hitting a home run
  • With 41 receptions over the last two seasons, Jackson at least has the potential to be a three-down player as a later round flyer
  • Had success with deeper routes as well out of the backfield, with many of his targets being not just check-offs
  • Gets very good marks from coaches on being a humble, hard-working player
  • Not a return man, but Jackson contributed on special teams in college (as a blocker) and that should help his odds in the pros
  • Jackson set the Eastern Michigan record in 2015 with 16 total touchdowns
  • Often played out of a spread
  • Lacks obvious playing time against much elite competition (but same could be said for Thomas Rawks out of Central Michigan last year)
  • Held his own okay in a match-up at LSU where Eastern Michigan of course got pounded (44-22), where Jackson totaled 66 yards rushing on 19 carries with a score
  • COMBINE UPDATE: Jackson wasn’t invited to the Combine, but he got on the radar with a blistering Pro Day performance. Weighing in at 6’1” and 220 lbs, Jackson run two blazing fast Forty–Yard dashes — one in 4.35 seconds, and the other at 4.38. He then went on to post an insane 41” Vertical Leap and 11’1” Broad Jump. Both of those scores at the Combine would have been 2nd-best among running backs. His 4.35 time would have been 2nd-best as well. We posted a Thomas Rawls profile last year on DFW, and Jackson certainly merits some consideration that he too could be a deep high-upside sleeper. He went to Eastern Michigan because they would let him play both baseball and football (Jackson eventually settles on just football). With his impressive Pro Day, look for Jackson to get his name called later in the NFL draft. He’ll make for an interesting deep-sleeper DFW dynasty watch.
  • NFL DRAFT SELECTION: 6th Round (6.41), Dallas Cowboys
  • 2016 OUTLOOK: Jackson has a lot of raw physical attributes and good size that makes him an attractive dynasty sleeper. Unfortunately, the path to playing time is close to nil in 2016 with Ezekial Elliott set to be the man in Dallas and the team stacked with veteran depth in Alfred Morris and Darren McFadden. Jackson will need to bid his time and wait. McFadden has one year left on his contract and Morris has two, so it’s possible that by 2018 Jackson is the RB2 in Dallas (or perhaps next year if he can push Morris).