Drake Jackson Drafted by 49ers: San Francisco's Updated Depth Chart After Round 2

Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IIApril 30, 2022

BOULDER, CO - OCTOBER 2:  Linebacker Drake Jackson #99 of the USC Trojans lines up on defense against the Colorado Buffaloes during a game at Folsom Field on October 2, 2021 in Boulder, Colorado.  (Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)
Dustin Bradford/Getty Images

The San Francisco 49ers selected USC edge-rusher Drake Jackson with the No. 61 overall pick in the 2022 NFL draft on Friday.

The B/R NFL Scouting Department ranks Jackson seventh overall among edge-rushers in this class and No. 46 overall. His pro comparison is the Denver Broncos' Randy Gregory.

Jackson amassed 37 tackles and five sacks in 10 games for the Trojans last year. He's a 6'3", 254-pound edge-rusher who should make an immediate impact in San Francisco.

Here's a look at how the 49ers' defensive depth chart shakes out with Jackson aboard.


49ers Defensive Depth Chart

LDE: Drake Jackson, Samson Ebukam, Charles Omenihu, Alex Barrett

LDT: Javon Kinlaw, Kevin Givens, Maurice Hurst

RDT: Arik Armstead, Hassan Ridgeway, Chris Slayton

RDE: Nick Bosa, Kerry Hyder, Jordan Willis

MLB: Fred Warner, Azeez Al-Shaair, Oren Burks

OLB: Dre Greenlaw, Demetrius Flannigan-Fowles, Curtis Robinson

CB: Ambry Thomas, Deommodore Lenoir, Ka'dar Hollman 

CB: Charvarius Ward, Dontae Johnson

SCB: Emmanuel Moseley, Darqueze Dennard

SS: Jimmie Ward, Talanoa Hufanga

FS: George Odum, Tarvarius Moore

Depth chart info provided by Ourlads and Over the Cap.



Jackson appears to be a replacement for Dee Ford, as Sam Monson of PFF noted:

Sam Monson @PFF_Sam

Nobody in this draft class has the picture-perfect dip and bend as an edge rusher that Drake Jackson has.<br><br>Goes to the 49ers to become their new Dee Ford. <br><br>That's an outstanding pick here.

Ford is still on the roster, but per 49ers general manager John Lynch, his time with San Francisco appears that it will be over soon.

"I don't see a lot of hope with him being a factor for us on the field moving forward," Lynch said at the NFL Annual Meeting (h/t Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports Bay Area).

"I think we tried to be as patient as possible, and no fault of Dee, he just ran into a bad situation with his back, where he couldn’t get healthy."

Unfortunately, Ford has played in just seven games over the past two years due to injuries. He was placed on injured reserve in Week 7 of last year.

Per 49ers' senior reporter Keiana Martin after the move was announced, "the veteran pass rusher has been dealing with an intricate back and neck injury that kept him sidelined for all but one game in 2020."

Ford signed a five-year, $85.5 million contract with the 49ers during the 2019 offseason after an excellent run in Kansas City that ended with a 13-sack campaign in 2018.

Now it appears Jackson will get his chance to start opposite All-Pro end Nick Bosa on the 49ers' defensive front. San Francisco had one of the better defenses in football last year, allowing the ninth-fewest points per game.

The 49ers were also excellent in the playoffs, holding the high-powered Dallas Cowboys, Green Bay Packers and Los Angeles Rams to just 47 total points.

Adding Jackson should only make the 49ers better on that side of the ball as he joins a unit that also includes Bosa, Fred Warner and Arik Armstead among other standouts.