Darrell Jackson NFL Stats
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Darrell Jackson NFL Game Log
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Free Agent Team Injury Report
Whoever wins the battle between Stokley and Darrell Jackson could make plays in what
should be an improving Denver passing game.
Keary Colbert is penciled in as the starter, but
he's a possession receiver with a thin resume,
and Stokley and Jackson have more speed and
Jackson seems to battle one injury or another almost every season, but more often than not, he’ll produce when he’s healthy. Last year, he spent most of training camp recovering from knee surgery, and though he managed to suit up for Week 1, he missed time later in the year with a hip pointer and then turf toe. Still, when all was said and done, Jackson brought in 10 touchdowns in 13 games, thanks to 16 red-zone targets, four of which were inside the five-year line. Jackson converted all four goal-line looks into scores, though we have little doubt those plays would have been called for Shaun Alexander had Alexander not missed most of the season with a foot injury.
In any event, the status of Alexander’s foot is a moot point because Jackson was traded on draft day to the 49ers where he’ll allegedly compete with Arnaz Battle for the starting flanker spot. Of course, if Jackson’s healthy, we’d tab him as the odds-on favorite to emerge as quarterback Alex Smith’s top option over the inconsistent Ashley Lelie and the unestablished Battle.
While Jackson has only average size, (6-0, 201), unexceptional speed and modest explosiveness, he has good quickness, can change direction rapidly and runs sharp routes. True to form, Jackson was second in the NFL with 11 dropped passes, and both the 49ers and his fantasy owners will just have to live with that. Jackson missed the 49ers spring minicamp with a lingering turf toe condition, but he’s expected to be 100 percent healthy for the start of training camp in July.
Jackson played just six games last year due to a lateral meniscus tear and surgery to repair a loose flap of articular cartilage. He returned for two of the final three weeks of the season, then put some of his health concerns to rest during the playoffs ñ finishing second only to Steve Smith with 20 catches for 268 yards and two scores. Before last season, Jackson had been a reliable if unspectacular fantasy receiver, reaching 1,000 yards and seven touchdowns in three of his four previous seasons and failing to hit those marks only in 2002 when he missed time due to a concussion. Playing in a productive passing offense with star quarterback Matt Hasselbeck makes Jackson a virtual lock for a repeat of his usual numbers, health permitting. While Jackson has only average size, (6-0, 201), unexceptional speed and modest explosiveness, he has good quickness, can change direction rapidly and runs sharp routes. Perennially near the top of the dropped passes leader board, Jackson dropped just one in six games a year ago, make what you will of that small sample. Jackson will be sidelined until training camp after undergoing surgery in March to remove flaking in his right knee, but should be fully healthy come training camp.
Jackson’s been a reliable if unspectacular fantasy receiver the last four seasons, reaching 1,000 yards and seven touchdowns in three and failing to hit those marks only in 2002 when he missed time due to a concussion. Playing in a productive passing offense with a reliable quarterback in Matt Hasselbeck makes Jackson’s floor higher than some of the other receivers who will be drafted in the same round. But given his average size (6-0, 201 pounds), unexceptional speed and modest explosiveness, he’s doesn’t have a ton of upside, either. Jackson was targeted 160 times last season, good for fifth in the league, but he caught just 54 percent, thanks in part to 11 drops. Jackson’s also not much of a threat in the red zone, converting just 4-of-18 targets for scores. (He converted 5-of-18 in 2003). Jackson runs good routes and is an effective runner after the catch, but he’s not a big home-run threat, and he has a tendency to drop passes (23 over the last two seasons, tops in the NFL). With Koren Robinson falling from favor last year, and only Joe Jurevicius and Jerome Pathon brought in to bolster the receiving corps, Jackson should again be Hasselbeck’s favorite target, and that should ensure numbers roughly in line with his previous campaigns.
Although he lacks the measurables to be a true No. 1 receiver, Jackson is emerging as a Derrick Mason-type fantasy performer. In other words, you can’t pay a premium price for a 2003-type season (which is the limit of his upside), because he could easily produce far less given his unexceptional abilities and the presence of Koren Robinson, who was targeted almost as often as Jackson (130 passes). Jackson’s ability to outperform Robinson so far can be traced to his success in the red zone (five TDs here in ’03 vs. one for Robinson). But Jackson caught just four total red-zone passes in ’02, so it’s unwise to pay for that red-zone proficiency on draft day. Incidentally, Jackson led NFL receivers with 12 drops, though that didn’t stop quarterback Matt Hasselbeck from looking his way.
Give Jackson credit for being resilient -- his scary concussion in Dallas could have easily ended his season, but he made it back on the field a month later and had six strong games (32 catches, 500 yards, four touchdowns) to end the year. While Koren Robinson is more athletically gifted than Jackson and naturally has a higher upside, Jackson certainly makes a lot more sense as a value play. A lot of people are boarding the Seattle bandwagon this season, but Jackson seems to be somewhat forgotten in the minds of some fantasy players.