Alabama in the Pros

Kareem Jackson helps shutdown Raiders’ offense, helps Texans advance to next round

Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

One former Alabama standout has advanced to the divisional round of the NFL playoffs.

Houston Texans cornerback Kareem Jackson entered Wild Card Weekend on a unit that ranks first in the league in total defense (301.3 ypg) and second in pass defense (202 ypg). In Saturday’s match-up against Oakland, Jackson helped Houston shut down the Raiders’ passing attack in a 27-14 win.

He aided a defensive secondary that limited quarterback Connor Cook to completing 40 percent of his throws (18 of 45 passing) for 161 yards and three interceptions, while holding another ex-Crimson Tide standout—Amari Cooper—to just two receptions for 10 yards. Prior to losing Derek Carr to a season-ending injury, the Raiders were sixth in the NFL in total offense (373.3 ypg).

Along with totaling four tackles, the former first-round pick assisted in stifling Oakland’s ground game to 64 yards on 24 carries. The Raiders entered this weekend with the sixth-best rushing attack in the NFL, averaging 120.1 yards a game. With the victory, Houston earned its first playoff win since the 2012 Wild Card Game.

Jackson and company will face either New England or Kansas City in the AFC Divisional round next week.

Stephen M. Smith is a senior analyst and columnist for Touchdown Alabama Magazine.  You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @Smsmith_TDALMag.

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