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New England Patriots star J.C. Jackson sounds off on the team

A first-time Pro Bowl this past season and one of the best cornerbacks in the NFL, J.C. Jackson of the New England Patriots is slated to hit free agency in March.

Of course, that’s if New England doesn’t place the franchise tag on the former undrafted free agent from Maryland.

On the very same day teams can start placing said tag on players ahead of free agency, Jackson absolutely sounded off on the organization. The 26-year-old corner has not heard from New England’s brass and isn’t too happy about it.

“I guess they feel like they don’t need me,” Jackson said, via Phil Perry of NBC Sports Boston. “I guess I can’t be that important to them. I know I am, but they’re not showing me.”

Related: 5 players most likely to be hit with NFL franchise tag

J.C. Jackson not happy with the New England Patriots

new england patriots' j.c. jackson sounds off on the team.
Feb 3, 2022; Las Vegas, NV, USA; New England Patriots cornerback J.C. Jackson (27) during AFC practice for the Pro Bowl at Las Vegas Ballpark. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Jackson did indicate that he will be out there and play if the Patriots do indeed tag him before the deadline next month. But it’s becoming increasingly clear that a divorce could end up being in the cards here.

New England refused to sign Jackson to a long-term contract extension after he recorded nine interceptions with the team back in 2020. Now that he’s coming off another brilliant season, Jackson wants to be paid like one of the top cornerbacks in the NFL.

  • J.C. Jackson stats (2020-21): 98 tackles, 37 passes defended, 17 interceptions, 51.4 QB rating allowed.

Those are some eye-opening numbers right there. Sure Jackson has yielded eight touchdown catches during that same two-year span. But he’s among the best ball hawks in the NFL.

The question now becomes whether New England will place the tag on Jackson. Said tag would cost the team an estimated $17.3 million against the cap in 2022. New England is currently roughly $7.3 million under the projected 2022 NFL salary cap.

As for Jackson, he’d cash in big time on the NFL free agent market. The youngster would be looking at somewhere between $18 and $20 million annually, making him one of the highest-paid cornerbacks in the NFL.

There’s also a chance New England places the tag on Jackson with the expectation of working out a sign-and-trade with another team for his services.

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