Seventh-round draft pick Leon Jacobs job interview with the Jacksonville Jaguars was a success. He turned heads and worked himself into a potential starting position at SAM (strong side) linebacker.
Jacobs played in college for the University of Wisconsin. He played against solid competition in a highly competitive conference.
To start he played 13 games in 2017 and had 55 tackles (34 solo), 8 tackles for losses, and 3.5 sacks.
His play earned All-Big Ten honorable mention for the 2017 season.
In addition, he earned the honor of Big Ten Defensive player of the week on October 16 and co-defensive player of the week on November 11.
He played inside and outside linebacker and even played some fullback for the Badgers.
Finally, he got lost behind the depth at his position prior to 2017 but made the most of his senior year.
Draft Report (Via NFL.com)
"First he was invited to the NFL draft combine. He measured 6’1” and weighed 246 pounds. His draft grade was an impressive 5.51. This grade indicates a chance to be a starter in the NFL Comments include praise for his speed, explosion, and athleticism. Lack of experience is a major negative."
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Next, there are numerous positives on various websites. The comments are very positive and include the following: Jacobs starts at linebacker day 1, he is impressive early at camp, Jacobs is off to a good start, and 7th rounder Leon Jacobs is turning into a starter.
Jon Kurland of Big Cat Country summed it up best in his post, Jacksonville Jaguars Training Camp Day 8.
"Leon Jacobs has cemented himself as the starting SAM linebacker appearing in the right spots and making a couple of notable plays."
Leon Jacobs is a feel-good story. He has taken his opportunity and run with it. In addition, he was very lucky to become a Jaguar. The Jaguars have other late round draft choices and rookie free agents who are contributors to their success.
First and foremost Telvin Smith was drafted in the 5th round in 2014 and plays at a Pro Bowl level. Others include Allen Hurns, Keelan Cole, and Corey Grant. The Jaguars continue the tradition of finding players that others have missed.