Adoree Jackson's NFL career almost was stunted before it began thanks to a phone mishap after the Titans decided him to make him the 18th pick in the NFL Draft Thursday.
"The GM calls my phone and it rang once, everybody's anxious and I was late to pick up the phone," Jackson said. "I say, 'hello', and three to four seconds go by and I don't hear anything so I think they're pranking me. I was about to put the phone down and then I heard the GM go, 'hello, is this Adoree?', and that's when I knew it was the right guy."
Ok, so things got off to a bit of a rocky start, but moments later Jackson was climbing the "Rocky Steps" leading up to the NFL Draft stage and shaking hands with Commissioner Roger Goodell. He was officially a Tennessee Titan, and the cornerback the team so badly coveted.
The Titans ranked 30th in the NFL in pass defense a year ago and Jackson gives them a top end corner to pair opposite free agent signee Logan Ryan.
Considered one of the best pound for pound players in the Draft class, Jackson's a small, but uber-athletic cornerback that is comfortable in coverage all over the field and shined as a returner during his college career at USC.
It's that versatility that set him apart for many draft experts and, seemingly, the Titans as well.
"Im a guy that can play inside or outside and do returns," Jackson said. "So versatility is something that sets me apart."
Jackson joins wide receiver Corey Davis, who the Titans selected fifth overall Thursday on a productive opening night of the draft.
He may not take top billing on this night, but that's just fine with Jackson. The East St. Louis native is ready to prove himself all over again and help the Titans get over the hump.
"Just a guy that's going to compete and work his tail off," Jackson said. "I'm going to do the little things and try to get better each day."
It was almost a case of a missed connection when the night began. But the Titans are confident opponents' passing games will be hearing from their newest cornerback for a long time.