Detroit Lions: 4 Undrafted Free Agents with a Chance to Make the Team

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Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

Justin Jackson, LB

This former Wake Forest linebacker is one of those ‘freaks‘ you keep hearing about. Based on my own metrics, which use combine measurements on a 0-10 scale, he comes in as the 7th best athlete on the Lions, only slightly behind Ziggy Ansah and ahead of the Lions recently drafted ‘freak’, Larry Webster.

Though undersized for a LB (A knock on both Tulloch and Levy), Jackson is fast and rates from above average to well above average in every measurable category outside of size.  In fact, his high athletic scores come even though his 40 was NOT part of the measurements, as he didn’t run due to a hamstring injury.  If I had included his reported 4.4 speed in my calculations, he would come in as the 2nd best athlete on the roster, behind only Calvin Johnson (Who did you think was number one?).

So why did he go undrafted in the first place?  I have no idea.  I’m not going pretend that I do, either.  Jackson was a draftable prospect based on his athleticism alone, but he’s also a versatile player who can play all three LB spots, which actually helps his chances to make the Lions more than his base athleticism does.  He faces tough competition from entrenched veteran Ashlee Palmer and Lions draft picks Tahir Whitehead and Travis Lewis, but he has a good shot if he can show ST value.

Hgt – Justin Jackson is shorter than Average LB by 0.89 inches. This rates a 4.64/10.
Wgt – Justin Jackson is lighter than Average LB by 6.58 pounds. This rates a 3.89/10.
40 – Justin Jackson is faster than Average LB by 0.31 seconds. This rates a 10/10.(Unofficial, would be fastest since at least 2003)
Bench – Justin Jackson is stronger than Average LB by 3.86 reps. This rates a 6.08/10.
Vert – Justin Jackson jumped higher than Average LB by 5.36 inches. This rates a 7.36/10.
Shuttle – Justin Jackson is faster than Average LB by 0.02 seconds. This rates a 5.21/10.
3 Cone – Justin Jackson ran faster than Average LB by 0.39 seconds. This rates a 8.89/10.