Jaylen Jefferson: 2022 Pro Prospect Interview
Name: Jaylen Jefferson
School: Truman State University
What goals did you set and/or accomplish in your final collegiate season?
Some goals I set for myself this year were to finish as one of the top kickoff return specialists in the country and also become a better versatile player/ weapon for my offense. I was able to help lead my offense this year by being a major tool in the running/passing game. I also accomplished my other goal by finishing second in the country for Kick return average yards and also tied for first in Kick return Touchdowns.
Q: How do you think you took advantage of the extra year of eligibility to increase your chances of going pro?
I took advantage of my extra year of eligibility by becoming more of a student of the game. I believe I was able to show that I am a special athlete when out in space. This year the game itself felt slower than the previous year. Which was an advantage for me physically and mentally on the field.
Q: What would your coaches and teammates say about the type of player you are?
My coaches and teammates would tell you that I am a great teammate and a hard worker. Regardless of the situation, I loved competing with my brothers whether I was doing good or they were. I love the game of football. I love competing and I love being faced with challenges. I am not selfish by any means. I want to help the team succeed in whatever area it is needed.
Q: When you are studying film, what are the things you focus on to improve your game?
When I look at the film I examine the tendencies that I might show when playing and I also rewatch the film to see what I could have done better with such things as finishing runs. When watching film of the other team I look at things such as different personnel or position alignments. I then break down the tendencies of certain players to try to find ways to create disadvantages in my matchups. Lastly, I watch full games to see how our opponent reacts to certain situations to see what type of player I am going against.
Q: What separates you from the other pro prospects at your position?
Some things that separate me from other pro prospects are my high football IQ and versatility. I am a good athlete with the ball in my hands especially in space. I have good speed and I am very explosive on the field. Another thing I think separates me from others is my understanding of the importance of special teams. I believe that I am a great special teams player rather than being a gunner on a punt team, returning the ball, or simply blocking for a teammate. I have also played defensive back in college and will be prepared to flip sides on the ball. I can compete anywhere on the field.
Q: What is your offseason plan to train and prepare for professional opportunities?
My offseason plan is to work on my strength and speed, specifically my 40 time with my trainer back at home and on my own. I am still looking for representation and an opportunity to participate in a pro day.
Q: What kind of strengths and abilities will you bring to a team that will stand out both on and off the field?
With my speed and explosiveness, I would bring great playmaking abilities to any phase on someone’s team. I am a hard worker, a great teammate, about my business, and would do anything to contribute to your team winning.
Q: What is your final pitch to the NFL and any other pro leagues?
My final pitch to the NFL and any other pro leagues is I just need an opportunity. The film would show you that I am a good football player that is great with the ball in space. With my speed and explosiveness, I can help your team in any phase of the game. I am willing to do anything to help your organization win and succeed. You will not only get a good player on the field but even a greater person off the field. I just want to continue having fun playing the game I love and also work to become the best player that I can be.