NFL Draft Q&A: Xzavie Jackson

There are several essential elements of the cover-two defense. Safeties that can cover in space and linebackers that can run from sideline to sideline are necessary ingredients to make it work. But perhaps most importantly, consistent pressure from the front four is what makes the whole scheme work. Xzavie Jackson has certainly shown that he can get after the quarterback.

Xzavie Jackson
DE, Missouri

Numbers:
6'3", 279 pounds

2006 Stats: 
64 tackles (40 solo), 13.5 TFL, 8 sacks, 1 INT, 4 passes defended, 2 FR, 1 FF

The Buzz:  "He's a much stronger player than he was. You'll see him running over offensive linemen. You'll see him throwing them to the side. You'll see him doing the things that he's physically capable of doing." - defensive line coach Craig Kuligowski ... Was suspended for the season opener versus Murray State for an undisclosed disciplinary issue. Jackson said it was related to an incident over the summer where "I got in some trouble." But he definitely learned from the experience, saying, "At that time, I wasn't being a positive leader and a positive role model for the youngsters" ... Possesses good upper body strength and is drawing interest from pro teams as a pass-rush specialist at DE or as a pass-rushing outside LB in a 3-4 scheme ... Currently projects as a late-round pick or priority undrafted free agent. 


Ed Thompson: Talk a little bit about your college career and what you're most proud of from your Missouri days.

(AP Photo/L.G. Patterson)
Xzavie Jackson: I came into college as a tight end and was thrown into the fire as a defensive end. I think I progressed a whole lot with being a real aggressive defensive player. My offensive instincts took over on the defensive side. I am most proud of being one of the only defensive linemen to score four TDs in his career. I got better as a pass-rusher over the years. I started off with having no sacks my freshmen year to bringing the house my senior year. At the University of Missouri, I am No. 10 all-time in sacks in my career. Being a real effective pass-rusher has done a great deal for me going into the Combine. Teams like a great pass-rusher, and I think that I am going to be a real effective pass-rusher and run-stopper at the next level.

ET: What do you attribute your success to as a pass-rusher?

XJ: Hard work and wanting to get it done. That is what pretty much everybody measures themselves off of. Sacks and tackles-for-loss and things like that. I think that I attributed that to my hard work and my coach being a good teacher of the pass rush.

ET: Talk a little about your ability against the run.

XJ: I think that I am a real aggressive player up front. I have this attitude about me that you aren't going to run my way. I am a real strong player. Not too strong upstairs, but if you look at the stats for the University of Missouri, right now, I hold the squat record. There's not too many people that have legs that are as strong as mine. So I think that if I get my hands inside and use my squatting on the field, teams ran my way. Offensive players try to block me, and it's null and void.

ET: How many pounds did you squat?

XJ: Right now, the record is 723.

ET: That's impressive.

XJ: I've got to use that to my advantage. Not too many people know that I hold the record at the University of Missouri, but my name is on the charts right now.

Scout.com subscribers can read the rest of this exclusive interview and find out what other teams have shown some interest in Xzavie Jackson by clicking here.


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