In a Wednesday evening post on Yahoo by Nick Mensio, listed potential low profile free agent fits for all 32 teams and has Kansas City Chiefs soon-to-be free agent defensive end Tyson Jackson listed for the Steelers.
Jackson revived his career as a 3-4 end under coach Andy Reid and DC Bob Sutton with the Chiefs in 2013 and is hitting the market at the right time. DEs Ziggy Hood and Brett Keisel are free agents in Pittsburgh and likely aren’t going to be brought back. The Steelers need to get younger up front and shore up their 21st-ranked run defense. Jackson will turn 27 in June and can play either side of the line.
Jackson, who was selected third overall by the Chiefs in 2009 NFL Draft, did play well last season and had a career-high four sacks. However, as Adam Teicher of ESPN.com smartly pointed out recently, Jackson played mainly on running downs. In fact, Jackson’s 519 total snaps played last season, including the playoffs, was exactly 43% of all defensive snaps.
According to Pro Football Focus, Jackson rushed the passer 266 times in 2013 and his four sacks coupled with eight total hurries resulted in a lowly 4.1 pass rushing productivity number. If you are scoring at home, Steelers soon-to-be free agent defensive end Ziggy Hood had a 4.3 pass rushing productivity number in 2013 and he played 59.1% of all defensive snaps.
Teicher also added this tidbit on Jackson:
Jackson was the third overall pick in the 2009 draft but has never played up to that standard. Jackson was drafted to fill a need when the Chiefs required some defensive ends to play in what was their new 3-4 defense. Jackson’s first three seasons were largely a waste. He started in two of them mainly because the Chiefs were trying to justify the pick and they had no one better.
Does the above sound familiar? Instead of signing Jackson, the Steelers would likely be better off just re-signing Hood as both will likely have the same market value.
As far as Steelers moving on elsewhere, Mensio has wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders as being a fit for the Detroit Lions. I could certainly see that possibly coming to fruition, but I wonder how Sanders feet and knee would do on the field turf of Ford Field.