As of yesterday, cornerback J.C. Jackson was traded from LA to the New England Patriots, where he played previously, for a 2025 sixth-round pick from the Patriots and a 2025 seventh-round pick from the Chargers.
Tom Pelissero relayed that the Chargers will also be “paying the majority of J.C. Jackson’s $12 million guaranteed salary to facilitate the deal” and “they move on from a player who didn’t fit and the Patriots get immediate help with rookie Christian Gonzalez likely out for the season.” Jackson’s time in LA was over before it even really started.
In the offseason of 2022, Jackson was signed to a 5 year $82.5 million dollar contract with $40 million guaranteed. During training camp, he had surgery on his ankle and missed the rest of camp, managing to make it back by Week 2 against the Chiefs. Jackson was added for his coverage abilities and to be that outside corner that the Chargers desperately needed.
In 2021, he had a career-high in pass breakups (12), STOPs (14), and solo tackles (50), according to Pro Football Focus. The “New England version” of Jackson is not what the Chargers got. Before leaving the season in Week 7 of 2022 with a ruptured patella, Jackson just couldn’t get it together.
It started out small. On his first game back against the Chiefs, he missed a tackle on Travis Kelce who spun away to get the first down. Then things escalated. In Week 4 against the Texans, he made contact with tight end Jordan Akins to try to bring him down. Akins broke the tackle and almost ran in for a touchdown when Asante Samuel Jr. stepped in to stop the play. Jackson was eventually benched during Week 6 against the Broncos, as he was late in coverage, and tight end Greg Dulcich got an easy touchdown. Jackson was injured the next week and got surgery on his knee in October.
It was remarkable he even participated in training camp this year, given the injury he sustained. And during the summer he looked a little like his former self, making pass breakups and aggressive plays. But when it came to the season, he again looked out of rhythm. He made some great pass breakups on Tyreek Hill during Week 1 against Miami, but then also wasn’t able to catch Hill as he ran in for a 35-yard touchdown.
He committed other errors during the matchup, like the pass interference penalty that caused Miami to have a first down at the end of the second quarter, giving them the opportunity to kick a field goal. Jackson then played a little against the Titans and wasn’t activated for the Minnesota game, despite being healthy. Overall, the writing was on the wall for this one.
Well, the Chargers were not really using Jackson all that much, so nothing has to change. Ja’Sir Taylor can now be in the slot with Michael Davis and Samuel Jr. on the outside. The Chargers have also just signed Essang Bassey off waivers and waived Christopher Hinton, so that adds some depth along with Deane Leonard. It’s sad that a promising acquisition didn’t work out but hopefully, the Chargers can keep moving along just as they have been without him.