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3 reasons the Bills should draft: Alabama S Eddie Jackson

Position: Safety.
School: Alabama.
Measurables: 6-foot-0, 201 pounds.
Combine stats: Bench press: 10 reps.
Career stats: 38 games, 126 tackles (7.5 for losses), nine interceptions, 12 passes defended, three fumble recoveries, two forced fumbles.
Draft projection: Third-fourth round.


1. He's got a nose for the ball – and the end zone. Jackson owns the Alabama career record for yardage on interception returns, with 303 produced on nine picks. That includes three pick-sixes, which is tied for the Crimson Tide's career record. The last one of those came in Alabama's home opener in 2016 against Western Kentucky.

2. On a stacked defense, he was a leader. Jackson's bio on the Crimson Tide website calls him the "captain of the Alabama secondary" and mentions that he was selected as one of the team's permanent team captains for the 2016 season. Jackson earned second-team All-SEC honors from the conference's coaches despite playing in just eight games. His season was cut short by a broken leg suffered against Texas A&M. The injury kept Jackson from competing in the Senior Bowl and NFL Scouting Combine, although he did meet with teams.

3. He's got return skills. Jackson added two touchdowns on punt returns during his Alabama career. What makes that more impressive is it came on just 11 returns, all of which came during his senior year. He averaged a whopping 23 yards on those returns.

Fun fact: As part of being a permanent team captain, Jackson was honored before Alabama's spring game when he placed his hand and footprints into wet concrete on the Crimson Tide's "Walk of Fame," which surrounds the Denny Chimes tower on the school's campus. It's a tradition that dates back to 1948.

They said it: "He should be 100 percent healthy in the very near future and his combination of instincts, range and ball skills is outstanding. He has played cornerback in the past and he has the ability to play in the slot if needed. He’s also a very accomplished punt returner. He isn’t an overly physical force defender, but he is an effective tackler.” – NFL Network analyst Daniel Jeremiah

The Buffalo News is profiling 30 prospects in 30 days leading up to the NFL Draft, which begins April 27. Up next: Troy OT Antonio Garcia.

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