Rams’ offensive player to watch: RB Steven Jackson

September 12, 2012

How he beats you: The nine-year veteran runs with power and speed. The workhorse of the Rams’ offense, Jackson has produced seven consecutive 1,000-yard seasons. The Rams also use him in the passing game, where he is both a solid receiver and pass protector.


Steven Jackson has rushed for at least 1,000 yards in seven consecutive seasons. (Associated Press/Duane Burleson)

 “He does everything well,” nose tackle Barry Cofield says. “He’s a big, strong guy that runs with a lot of speed. He’s an experienced guy with a lot of vision, and he knows what he wants to accomplish each time he touches the ball. He’s been effective for years.”

 Production for Jackson is key because it eases pressure on quarterback Sam Bradford, who is still trying to establish himself in the NFL.

 “If they’re able to rely on the running game and just pass and play-action off of that, then they’ll be tough to beat,” Cofield said.

Jackson gained just 53 yards on 21 carries against the Detroit Lions, with four catches for 41 yards. But the Redskins are bracing for a strong effort on Sunday.

How to stop him: The Redskins must be sure in their tackling and stick to their assignments. Jackson is a punishing runner, so arm-tackling won’t do the job. It will take a group effort with the defensive linemen controlling the line of scrimmage and the linebackers clogging running lanes.

 “He’s a bruiser, big guy,” outside linebacker Brian Orakpo said. “We have to make sure we play our run fits real well. … We have to tackle him real low. A horse can’t run without legs. That’s why we have to make sure we tackle him low and gang tackle him.”

 Said defensive end Adam Carriker: “You’ve got to be ready to bring your big boy pads to the game, because he’s going to bring his.”

Mike Jones covers the Washington Redskins for The Washington Post. When not writing about a Redskins development of some kind – which is rare – he can be found screaming and cheering at one of his kids’ softball, baseball, soccer or basketball games.
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