Washington Commanders starting cornerback William Jackson III has requested a trade, according to multiple reports. Those same reports indicate Commanders general manager Martin Mayhew hopes to fulfill Jackson’s wish. Should the Tennessee Titans acquire Jackson? Let’s explore.
Jackson signed a three-year, $42 million contract with the Commanders during the 2021 offseason. The Commanders have already paid approximately half of Jackson’s contract. An acquiring team would owe Jackson $3.8 million against their salary cap down the stretch of the 2022 campaign, but Jackson remains under contract through 2023.
A disagreement over scheme fit led to Jackson’s request. Jackson is a press-man coverage cornerback that’s been miscast in Jack Del Rio’s zone-heavy approach. The Commanders have played zone coverage on 62.3% of their coverage snaps this season, per Pro Football Focus. Jackson allegedly prefers to be traded to a team that runs his preferred man-coverage tendencies.
Jackson has been putrid. Jackson has allowed 16 receptions on 19 targets for 219 yards, 60 yards after the catch, two touchdowns, no interceptions, and an opponent passer rating of 149.8, via Pro Football Focus. He was ironically benched during the first quarter of Sunday’s defeat to the Titans.
The Titans could certainly use a boundary cornerback. Jackson also fits Tennessee’s man-coverage identity. Acquiring Jackson would allow Roger McCreary to either play the nickel permanently, or Jackson would serve as a boundary backup to McCreary, further pushing Caleb Farley and Terrance Mitchell down the depth chart. There’s no denying the Titans could use another cornerback with Elijah Molden and Ugo Amadi still nursing injuries with no return in sight. Farley and Mitchell aren’t fit to see the field with consistency.
The Titans could utilize another boundary cornerback, and Jackson is a pretty good scheme fit for Tennessee and Shane Bowen. I still lean towards the Titans passing on Jackson. His current form, age (29) and bloated contract are tough sells for a Titans team that’s invested plenty at defensive back. What are your thoughts? Should the Titans acquire Jackson?