Alabama in the Pros

Pro Football Hall of Famer showers high praise on DB Eddie Jackson

Quinn Harris - USA TODAY Sports

When Ed Reed recognizes you, you are doing something right. 

The 11-year veteran, who epitomized the “free safety” position, was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame over the weekend. A native of St. Rose, La., Reed was larger than life at the University of Miami and would go on to be a first-round pick in the 2002 NFL Draft. 

With the Baltimore Ravens selecting him at No. 24 overall, he turned in a Hall of Fame career that included 605 tackles, 109 pass breakups, 61 interceptions, 1,541 interception return yards and seven touchdowns.

Reed was a nine-time Pro Bowl selection, five-time All-Pro first team honoree and three-time NFL interceptions leader with the Ravens. 

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He and Ray Lewis anchored a defense that won the Super Bowl in 2012. 

In discussing his career with NFL senior writer Terez A. Paylor, Reed listed names such as the late Sean Taylor, Troy Polamalu, Eric Berry and Earl Thomas to enter the Hall of Fame next. 

Before Paylor could reach his next topic, Reed immediately went to complimenting former Alabama safety Eddie Jackson on the job he’s doing in the league. A fourth-round pick of the 2017 draft, Jackson enters his third season with the Chicago Bears. He made his first-ever appearance on the NFL’s Top 100 Players list, debuting at No. 30 for this year.  

Jackson has five defensive scores in his first two seasons and eight picks. 

“I like Eddie Jackson coming up too,” Reed said of the young safety. “If he continues doing the things he’s doing in Chicago, he’s representing right. It’s about being consistent at the end of the day. So, he’s still young but I like where he’s moving.” 

Is Reed putting Jackson in the Hall of Fame next? 

It’s too early to tell now; however, his appreciation of him is strong. 

Jackson was a superstar for the Crimson Tide and now, NFL legends are watching him.  

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Stephen M. Smith is the managing editor and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine.  You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @CoachingMSmith.

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