Cornerback Adoree’ Jackson
July 30, 2021
Q: Would you have scored on that interception?
A: I would’ve hoped so. I hope nobody would’ve caught me or tagged me.
Q: Is that kind of a message of not taking it easy three days into camp?
A: We’re just competing, man. That’s the best thing, receivers versus DBs, running backs versus LBs, whatever it may be – tight ends, safeties or corners. Just competing and that’s what we try to pride ourselves on, just going out there and competing every day no matter who you are going against because you don’t know what you’re going to see in a game, so you might as well train yourself here at practice.
Q: Three days into camp, what do you think of the room?
A: Man, I met with the guys in Tampa and we worked out before. I already thought highly of them. I knew most of the guys from prior playing in college – [S Jabrill Peppers], played with [DB Joshua] Kalu, [DB Chris Milton], played with [S] Logan [Ryan] -- so I knew most of the guys, and playing against [CB James] Bradberry in Carolina. So, seeing these guys and playing with them, and I play with my own attitude, so that probably helps a little bit more. So, I think the chemistry that we have knowing each other – social media is a big thing, so we all follow each other and know each other. By next year, we’ll know each other even better.
Q: What’s your impression of James? Last year was his first year here and he had a big year. You said you’ve known each other before. Talk about that tandem that you guys can be a part of.
A: Man, Bradberry is a cool dude. Like, not just as a football person, but as a genuine person, just being able to talk to him, share experiences, bounce ideas off each other. At the end of the day, I’m always asking him questions trying to learn from him. He plays at a high level still and it’s just amazing being around such a great guy.
Q: How would you compare your skills versus his skills? Obviously, different kinds of players.
A: That’s the thing, we’re just different. I mean, but just competitors, that’s the one thing I can say. We pride ourselves on that long-distance competing day in and day out. Now we’re on the same team, so it’s like, damn. See him and it’s like, ‘Oh, we’re finally going to compete’ or vice-versa. They see us making plays and they’re trying to compete, so I like the room with me and Bradberry and just trying to compete and make each other better, and that’s what we’re trying to do.
Q: How much better do you feel physically than last year? I know it was a struggle for you last year really from the start.
A: Oh, my mindset and everything changed from the injury of last year and being able to hone in on myself. Not renew my faith, but keep my faith strong and make it stronger. I think that was a big thing for me to be able to come out here no matter what’s going on. You may be sore, you may be tired, but at one point I wasn’t sore and tired, I was just out. So, it’s just a blessing to wake up every day, so that’s my mindset every day. When I wake up, I just thank the Lord for letting me be alive.
Q: When were you able to flip that switch then?
A: I don’t know. It was a rough year for me, so I couldn’t tell you one point. But I knew I was trying to stay strong, talk to my family and those around me, to those encouraging. It’s just tough. I’ve never been injured and to not be able to do the things you love is tough. Sometimes you doubt yourself, but as long as you remain faithful and have some positivity around you, you’ll be alright. I think it just happened over time – I couldn’t tell you an exact date – but it happened over time and I’m thankful I went through what I went through.
Q: It wasn’t until after the season though? Is that fair?
A: I could say towards the end of the season because I was playing a little bit. Still, it was just my first time getting out there, so sometime in the offseason or towards the end of the season. I’ll give you that one.
Q: Adoree’, do you have a little chip on your shoulder this year? I mean, you were a number one pick, it didn’t go the way you wanted it to last year in Tennessee, now you come over here. Do you still have the attitude that, ‘Hey, I was a number one pick. I’ll show it’?
A: No. What’s crazy is when I first came here, I treated myself like a rookie, like the new guy. That was my mindset every day, just trying to learn from everybody no matter who you are in the room because at the end of the day, if you’re doing something some way and I’m like, ‘How did you do it like that?’ and implement it to my game. So, for me I’m just trying to enjoy it and soak up all the information that I can because you’re never too old to learn and you’re never too young to learn, as well. So, I think that’s just been my mindset, just to think that I’m not anybody and trying to improve on my game.
Q: Whenever [Head Coach] Joe [Judge] talks about you, he talks about versatility inside and outside. How much did you play in the slot in your career?
A: I remember when I first started playing in the slot when I was in college. I was like a safety hybrid, kind of what Su’a [Cravens] did when he was with us – shoutout to my dog, Su’a, man. But that’s how I learned starting on the inside. Went to Tennessee and did it a little bit, so understanding it and knowing it, and the worry to me was trying to learn. I didn’t want to let everyone down. Just because you taught it to one guy you never know what may happen and eliminate the confusion. You just want to get down out there in the box and think fast in situations and be ready to play.
Q: James talked about how you two guys complement each other and he said he thought he would handle the big guys and you would handle the fast ones. Do you kind of feel that way as well?
A: I’m just doing what they throw at me. Whatever the ask, I’m just willing to do. I don’t have any suggestions, I don’t have anything like that. I’m just focusing on every day, continuing to get better, getting my body ready for tomorrow and then the next day and the next day. That’s going to come down the line when it comes, but right now just focusing on the present and just trying to work on my craft and trying to get better.
Q: Do you see the benefits of bouncing back and forth and covering different guys? There have been drills where you have been on [Wide Receiver] Kenny [Golladay], then on [Wide Receiver Sterling] Shepard, then [Wide Receiver] Darius [Slayton]. Do you see the benefits necessarily or is it just a matter of just running through the drills?
A: No, everything that we do is to prepare us down the line. Just getting that muscle memory, getting those reps in, doing our thing. That’s the nice thing about situational football is what you cover today, you never know when it might come back down the line, it might come in December or something. That’s why we’ve got to focus on every play, reset every play, every period, take a deep breath and understand, ‘Okay, I’ve got to lock in and get ready to go,’ because you don’t know.
Q: In the times you’ve covered Kenny, what’s it like going up against him?
A: It’s crazy, we came out in the same class. To be able to go against him is a privilege. To have those different aspects – you’ve got Kenny, you’ve got [WR John] Ross [III], you’ve got Shep, you’ve got Darius, you’ve got [TE Evan] Engram. You’ve got all those different guys out there, so it’s just a blessing to have that versatility so that you can cover and see what you need to work on. That’s what I take out every time I’m covering everybody out there, what you need to work on for this type of skillset or this type of skillset.
Q: What stands out about him though? Is it his strength, his size?
A: First time I’d seen him, I didn’t know how tall he was. I’m not going to lie, I didn’t know how tall he was. Someone was like, ‘Yeah, that’s Kenny.’ I was like walking down the floor to him thinking, ‘Okay, he’s not—’ but then when I keep walking up, alright I’m looking up now. So Golladay, he’s a statue, pretty tall.
Q: When the defense has a day like today, does that motivate you?
A: I would say it motivates us to try to keep getting better, doing better, understanding that just because we had a good day that’s still in the back of the offense’s mind and they can come out and try to kill us. So, I think that’s what I like about us is every day we compete. We forget about tomorrow, we take the practice and say, ‘Okay, now we have to improve and get better.’ That’s the best part about every day coming to practice with these guys, we’re not thinking about yesterday and we’re not thinking ahead about tomorrow, we’re thinking about the present and how we can get better.