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NFL Draft Scouting Report: Tyree Jackson, Quarterback, Buffalo

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NFL Draft Scouting Report: Tyree Jackson, Quarterback, Buffalo

Tyree Jackson - Buffalo


Position: QB

Height: 6’7”

Weight: 249 lbs.

Year: RS-Junior

Hometown: Norton Shores, MI

Experience: 3-Year Starter




40yd dash: 4.59s

Broad jump: 120 in.

Vertical: 34.5 in.

3-cone: 7.09

20yd. Shuttle: 4.28s

Bench Press: DNP


Career Notes:


Jackson arrived to Buffalo in 2015 and redshirted as a freshman. In 2016, his first season of eligibility with the Bulls, he started nine of the ten games he played at quarterback. Coach Lance Leipold, who became Buffalo’s head coach in 2015, had inserted his scheme and was ready to hand the keys of the offense to Jackson. The redshirt freshman had ups and downs, throwing for only nine touchdowns and just as many interceptions. However, the best was yet to come for the Michigan native as he picked up Leipold’s offense.


In his sophomore year, Jackson got off to a slow start then suffered an injury that knocked him out for four games. When he returned from injury, he came back hitting more passes, throwing more touchdowns, and reducing his interceptions over the final four games of the season. While his size and mobility proved assets on read-option plays, he was primarily a pass-first quarterback in a run-first offense. He opened up lanes in the run game with the threat of his passing while the Bulls’ running game opened up passing lanes on play action plays. It was clear he settled into his role as a starter and didn’t look back, winning the final three games of the year.


Jackson’s 2018 season started off with an explosive six-touchdown game. He followed that up with more heaters, totaling fifteen touchdowns and three picks in his first four games. Jackson and the Bulls slowed down as the year wore on and his completion percentage came back down to earth. He still finished throwing for more than twice as many touchdowns as picks, and rushed for seven touchdowns through the year. The Bulls’ season finished on a heartbreaking note, losing the MAC championship to Northern Illinois in the final minutes after commanding a nineteen-point lead at one point. After entering the transfer portal for a brief window, Jackson ultimately decided to move on from college football and put his hat in the ring for the 2019 NFL Draft.


Injury Report:


Jackson suffered a knee injury in 2017 that took him out for four games in the middle of Buffalo’s season, but he came back to have as good of a four-game stretch to end 2017 as he had in his college career.


Career Stats: 6,999 yards, 55.8% completion, 49 touchdowns, 24 interceptions




Arm Strength 4.25/5.0: The velocity on Jackson’s passes this year was only bested by that of Kyler Murray. Jackson made his footwork and balanced stance just as much a part of his throwing motion as he did his gun-slinging shoulder. He wasn’t using just his powerful arm to make throws, à la Auburn-Cam Newton or Wyoming-Josh Allen. He timed his dropbacks with his receivers’ routes, using footwork, and made passes with touch and power frequently. The spray chart of his throws bears this out as he could make on-target throws just as frequently inside of ten yards as he could between 10-25 yards, even down the sidelines. He showed he could push the ball comfortably down the field about 50 yards, and could stretch his distance to just over sixty yards when he put everything into the ball.


Accuracy 2.75/5.0: The greatest luxury to having a strong arm for Jackson was that he could make any throw his offense asked of him. The two most accurate kinds of passes that Jackson made were on five to seven yard out routes and twenty-plus yard fade routes. Buffalo gashed teams frequently on first down with a run-pass option in which Jackson usually pulled the ball and hit a slot receiver (usually senior KJ Osborn) for the out to set up a second down and short. When teams would pick up on the speed of this play and crash the out route, Jackson would hold the ball until the perimeter receiver was one-on-one and drop a touch pass deep down the sidelines for a big gain. What made this play so lethal was the precision and consistency of Jackson’s throws. When he hit his slot receiver, he’d put the ball on the receiver’s inside shoulder to force the receiver upfield, closer to the first down marker. When he hit vertical routes down the sidelines, he threw a soft pass that receivers had time to settle under. His 55% completion rate is indicative of receivers who dropped a lot of catchable passes as much as it implies a quarterback who still has to develop consistent anticipation. He was more accurate than his raw numbers would have one believe, but he certainly has room to grow in anticipating when guys will come open.


Athleticism 4.0/5.0: As mentioned before, Jackson’s footwork was a big part of his success as a passer. Having a strong base made him a better quarterback and a helpful piece in the run game. There were times where he’d deliver a pass with a blitzing DB or linebacker trying to take him out and they’d just bounce off of his sturdy frame. It’s not often you see a quarterback helping a blitzer off the ground after a play, but Tyree had a few opportunities to do just that. When plays broke down, he could extend them and run away from speedy edge defenders while his receivers improvised downfield.


Leadership 4.75/5.0: Jackson earned the starting job as a redshirt-freshman with a second-year head coach coming off of a losing season. Even with Buffalo struggling in 2016, Jackson retained the starting job in 2017, helping the Bulls to their first .500 season in four years. In 2018, he led Buffalo to 10-3 and a MAC championship game. He led by example on the field, grinding out extra yards by putting his shoulder down against defenders. He trusted his receivers to make difficult throws, even when they made drops for stretches at a time. He didn’t intimate frustration or blame on his teammates when things went wrong, carrying a reserved demeanor during tough stretches. He celebrated his teammates’ successes and supported them with back-pats and an arm around a shoulder after tough moments.


Summary: Jackson didn’t have a one-direction linear development over his time at Buffalo. He did improve his response to blitzes and the placement of his passes. The biggest overall criticism that prevailed through his best and worst games was his inconsistency to make the best situational decisions, which is a fine place for a redshirt-junior to be—especially with the physical gifts and clearly visible commitment to learning a system Jackson possesses. There were plenty of times when he would pass up a high percentage short throw on first down for a later-developing route down the field, and he’d end up either taking a sack or throwing the ball away. It didn’t appear to be a vision problem, because he consistently read the field quickly and correctly, but more of a desire to make the best possible play on every single down, regardless of situation. If the best play appeared to be a late-developing seam route, then he’d let go of an easy check-down to see if that seam came open.


Overall Grade 3.78/5.0


If drafted by the Packers:


In a class of underwhelming quarterbacks, Jackson has been the darling project for fans of teams who can wait a few years to develop a late-round kid with rare build and skills. He will be 21 years old when this season kicks off in September, meaning he’ll be 25 years old in 2023, the year after Rodgers’s max contract expires. If Green Bay picks him up in the fourth, he’d be a good value whether they stuff him at the end of the depth chart like they did with Brett Hundley or groom him for stardom like Rodgers. The intriguing potential about Jackson lies in the rare combination of height, physical strength, arm strength, and touch he can have on his passes.


Green Bay did not run an offense that would be friendly to Jackson last year, but with Matt LaFleur and Nathaniel Hackett designing a run-heavy offense, the Buffalo prospect could force his way on the field in creative run sets like Taysom Hill has done with the Saints. He can make all of the throws and doesn’t have a ton of mechanical kinks to iron out, which helps quite a bit too. Considering the things that Hackett was able to do with 2016 Blake Bortles, there’s reasonable hope for the organization to spend one of their two fourth round picks on the young fella if he’s there on day three. However, considering the nebulous state of the middle of the pack quarterbacks this year, there’s a realistic possibility a team or a few teams are willing to gamble on Jackson as early as the second round.




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Fan friendly comments only: on Comments (18) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

albert999's picture

Dump Kizer
Develop Boyle more

Uncle Albert

Skip greenBayless's picture

Agree 100% Uncle Albert.


Samson's picture

Still hoping Gute finds a vet with some NFL ability as BU QB going into season 2019. -- If Gute can find a worthy vet & also draft this kid in the 4th --- then GB could jettison both Kizer & Boyle. --- Neither are NFL QBs. -- Note: (Boyle is still PS eligible - could run the scout team during the week)

Biggest problem may be that the QB guru (MM) is gone. -- How will the Pack QBs ever survive w/out MM's QB school & valued expertise in developing QBs. (wink-wink)

4zone's picture

Hmm, wondering how many RBs we draft this year? With Jones injury history, and new coach's focus on running, we are gonna need more bodies.

4zone's picture

Not sure we waste a pick on a QB unless a good potential backup drops.

sonomaca's picture

I’ve heard that he might go as high as late first. Packers aren’t going to use that high a pick on him. However, they might trade #30 to a team that wants to move up.

albert999's picture

Develop Boyle
kid deserves a chance

Old School's picture

If Rodgers is injured, the backup becomes the most important player on the team. Tennessee just got Tannehill as a backup.

Bure9620's picture

Good pickup, Gute will draft a QB, likely with one of the 4th rounders. Jackson, Thorson, Stidham, McSorley, should all be available.

sonomaca's picture

Why waste one in a QB?

ShooterMcGee's picture

Any opinions on Ross Uglems guy out of NDSU QB Easton Stick? His highlights are fun to watch he looks like Taysom Hill on the field.

4thand1's picture

I don't see the Pack investing much in a backup QB. Hopefully we'll only need a backup for mopup situations this year. How much is Kizer worth? If there is a decent project, draft him late and dump Kiser save some cash. Want a vet who won some games, Ryan Fitzpatrick is there.

Slim11's picture

Fitzpatrick is in Miami...signed a two-year deal.

sam1's picture

Bortles too expensive I would imagine for a back up! Might be worth looking into though!

packerbackerjim's picture

No sense of urgency. As with all other positions, MLF will thoroughly evaluate the next 4-5 months. If need be, he can later on add a QB.

Doug Niemczynski's picture

Another Brock Osweiller. ..

Doug Niemczynski's picture

6 foot 7...too tall....

Turophile's picture

Sorry, I dozed off there. Who were you talking about ?

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