With Stephon Gilmore out a third straight week because of a knee injury, the New England Patriots again turned to J.C. Jackson as their number one cornerback. And after an up-and-down performance in that role the previous week versus the New York Jets, Jackson bounced back nicely. He allowed just one reception all game, and registered his league-leading sixth interception to end a potential Baltimore Ravens scoring drive before the half.
Jackson was once again playing at a high level — so high in fact that Arif Hasan of The Athletic has named him as one of his “top performers” of the NFL’s tenth week of regular season action:
J.C. Jackson added another interception to his tally, marking the fifth consecutive game with a pick. Also targeted four times with only one reception allowed, Jackson is emerging as a premier cover corner who just needs to work on his tackling.
Seeing Jackson included as one of the four cornerbacks named is no surprise: he is quickly continuing his ascent into the upper echelon of cover corners — not bad for a former undrafted rookie free agent. While Stephon Gilmore is expected back at one point, the Patriots know that they can rely on Jackson to step in and properly fill the number one role with the reigning NFL Defensive Player of the Year out.
Jackson, by the way, is not the only Patriot mentioned on the list. Running back Damien Harris, offensive linemen David Andrews and Shaq Mason, and linebacker Chase Winovich have also made the cut as honorable mentions.