Former Tennessee Titans cornerback Adoree’ Jackson opened up about his relationship with Titans coach Mike Vrabel on the Cut To It podcast hosted by former NFL wide receiver Steve Smith Sr.
Jackson was drafted by the Titans (then coached by Mike Mularkey) in the first round of the 2017 NFL Draft. The former USC played well as a rookie and in his second year, the first under Vrabel . But Jackson struggled with injuries the next two seasons, with a knee injury limiting him to three games in 2020. Jackson was released after the 2020 season, although the Titans chose the guaranteed fifth-year option in his contract. recruit the previous spring.
Jackson signed with the New York Giants ahead of the 2021 season and has excelled. PFF ranked Jackson as the No. 12 outside cornerback as of 2022, placed in the “on the verge of being elite” tier.
On Tuesday’s podcast (from around 31:40 on the episode), Smith and Jackson discussed his turbulent first five seasons in the NFL.
“I was really tested in adversity after my rookie season because the whole staff was fired,” Jackson said. “… Vrabel arrived and at the end of the day I had to get used to him and what he wanted. The type of player he wanted and the style he wanted because he was the first time I tried to get used to it. We didn’t freeze. It didn’t mesh well. My game didn’t work and the way he trained didn’t work for me. me.
Opinion: Tony Boselli hits the road to the Hall of Fame after Bruce Smith’s unnecessary beard
Sign up for our NFL newsletter: All the NFL news you need to know delivered straight to you!
Smith and co-host Gerard Littlejohn asked Jackson to explain why the jelly between players and coaches is important.
“It’s important because the game is 90 percent mental and the other is physical,” Jackson said. “Physically I can go out there and do whatever I want to do. Mentally it’s being coached a certain way, a different pattern or a certain pattern.”
“…Trying to be more in my head, okay let me do what they want me to do and be right instead of not playing my game.”
Jackson was respectful of Vrabel, calling him a good coach “smart as hell”. And despite the lack of a match between coach and player, Jackson said he learned some life lessons during his three seasons with Vrabel.
“I’m glad I got through that,” Jackson said. “…The thing he taught us the most was about second chances. He was like, ‘Man, a lot of people don’t get second chances. If you do, make sure you take it. the best part.’ I say that all the time now.
“At the end of the day, even though we didn’t mix as a player and a coach, as people, I can resonate with some of the things he was saying. At the end of the day, I can never criticize him or say something bad.”
Jackson and the Giants take on the Titans to open the regular season Sept. 11 at Nissan Stadium.
This article originally appeared on Nashville Tennessean: Mike Vrabel’s approach to the Titans ‘didn’t work’ for Adoree’ Jackson