The Detroit Lions impressed with their 2021 NFL draft class, and it’s possible that one of the best players from that class may not have even been picked at all.
Cornerback Jerry Jacobs never stopped pushing, from the first round of offseason workouts on through training camp and even in the regular season. He managed to make his mark for the team in unexpected fashion right up until the point he suffered an unfortunate injury.
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Jacobs never let anything detract him, though, and it wasn’t tough to see how well he adjusted to the NFL in terms of his play. As a result, he took home a major Pro Football Focus honor as the league’s top graded undrafted free agent rookie from last season. Jacobs scored a 65.8 rating, which was tops in the league.
It wasn’t a stretch to say that Jacobs looked like one of the best rookies in the league never mind one of the top Detroit rookies last year. He managed to put up the kind of numbers that support that conclusion as well, with 34 total tackles.
Jacobs Looks Like Building Block for Lions
After this season of solid work, is Jacobs resting on his laurels for the 2022 year? Not in the least bit. As he took to Twitter to explain, he feels honored with the statistical shout-out, but is by no means done and plans to only aim much higher in the future.
“Blessed…But we aiming higher next year!!!!,” Jacobs tweeted.
It’s not as if there won’t be some adversity still to come his way to push through. Jacobs sustained a tough ACL injury in a game against Denver in December, and given the stressful nature of rehabbing such an injury, there was a thought that it could take up to nine months for Jacobs to get back on the field and look normal again. That would mean the start of 2022 season and camp could theoretically be in jeopardy for Jacobs.
However, there’s been very good news early on in the process, and Jacobs is already bouncing back in a big way and looking flexible off his surgery.
It’s clear with his hard work and mindset that nothing is going to slow Jacobs down whatsoever, and he remains locked-in on being an elite player for the Lions’ defense in the future.
Jacobs’ Stats & Highlights
To say Jacobs was an underdog for the team coming into the year was an understatement. When he signed after the NFL draft this past May, few people knew who the defensive back from Arkansas was or figured he would be sticking around for the long haul. In college, Jacobs did have decent stats, with 70 tackles and 4 interceptions to his credit to go with 2 forced fumbles and 10 passes defended. That was between two stops at both Arkansas State and Arkansas.
Coming into the league, it was easy to see why folks were a bit excited about Jacobs given the tape. Here’s a look at what he brought to the mix:
Obviously, there is some scrap to Jacobs, and that already served him well in cracking the Detroit roster. When he’s played, he hasn’t looked overmatched. As he learns more, he’s setting his goals high to become one of the best ever which he has confirmed himself.
So far, the stats seem to match Jacobs in terms of his goals, and it will be fun to see where his career leads him with the Lions in the years ahead. Already, he looks like one of the better young players in the league coming up.
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