NFL Prospect Focus: Gabe Jackson and Charles Sims
Gabe Jackson – Guard – Mississippi State
Size – 6033v – 339v – 5.20est
Strong Points – Huge man, very strong and explosive, run block, pass block, uses hands, anchor, athlete
Weak Points – Can look tentative in space when pulling
Summation – Gabe is a fifth-year senior and a four-year starter for the Bulldogs, He lines up at left guard. He is a huge man at 6033 – 339 with good arm length (33”). Despite his size, Jackson is very athletic and moves well in space. With his size, he is not only strong but very explosive.
Jackson always plays from a left handed three-point stance and has really good snap reaction. He gets to his blocks quickly and is very explosive on contact. I saw a number of run blocks where the knees of his opponent buckled when contact was made. Jackson stays low with his run blocks and keeps his feet moving. He can consistently gain ground with his run blocks. Big guys can often struggle getting to the second level. That is not the case with Jackson. He takes good angles out to linebackers and can adjust on the move. If there is a flaw in his game, it’s with pulls. He seems hesitant at times on who to hit and needs to adjust his footwork. Still, you see enough good things to know that he shouldn’t have a problem pulling in the NFL.
Jackson is a very consistent pass protector. He sets quickly and has a strong punch. He can play with bend and has the quick feet to slide, recover, and mirror his opponent. With his size, power, and bend, he has excellent anchor ability and never gets pushed back. He has good posture when pass blocking and stays square to the line.
Jackson is a very talented lineman. If there is a lineman other than a tackle who has a chance to be drafted in the first round this year, it's Jackson. He is the best interior lineman I have done, to date, this year. He should start for most teams as a rookie and be a productive pro.
Grade – A 6.7
Charles Sims – Running Back – West Virginia
Size – 5117v – 214v – 4.50est
Strong Points – Size, athlete, speed, outside run, instincts, cutback skills, hands
Weak Points – Not a top yards-after-contact type, pass blocking, run blocking
Summation – Sims began his career at Houston and was a two-year starter there. He enrolled in 2009 and played in a rotation. He redshirted in 2010 and was the starter in 2011 and 2012. He graduated in the spring of 2012 and transferred to West Virginia for his final year of eligibility.
Sims has good size for the position. At the Senior Bowl, he measured 5117 – 214 but also had small 8.25” hands. He is an athletic back with good play speed (4.50 est.). He has been a productive back, gaining 1,095 yards and averaging 5.3 yards per carry and 11 TDs. He also caught 45 passes for 401 yards and three TDs. In his three years at Houston, he ran for over 2,300 yards and had 158 receptions.
At West Virginia, Sims plays from a spread formation. They usually line up with one RB, but there are times when they have to RBs in the backfield. Sims has good initial quickness and is quick to the hole. He has good vision and instincts and does a good job seeing/finding cutback lanes. While he has good size, he is not a power runner. His production is because of his speed and instincts. He is not a tackle breaker, and his yards-after-contact is just above average. Sims is best outside. He has a burst to turn the corner and the speed to break long runs. He has the quick feet and loose hips to be elusive and make people miss in the open.
As a receiver, though his hands are small, he is very reliable. In the tapes viewed, I did not see him used much as a route runner. He was more a screen guy and checkdown receiver. Still, he catches the ball well and is a good runner after the catch. His career production as a receiver tells us that he is good. Sims is used to both run and pass block and is average at both. He is not an aggressive blocker, nor does he get and keep good position.
Though talented, I do not see Sims as a full-time back at the next level. He needs to improve his blocking and run-after-contact skills. He can be a valuable player in a rotation and may eventually start when he develops his overall game. Right now I see him as a “B” level player who has a chance to contribute as a rookie.
Grade – B 6.5
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