AP: Texans draft Alabama CB Jackson

From the AP: The Houston Texans need a cornerback to start immediately.

Alabama’s Kareem Jackson is ready for that challenge.

The Texans selected Jackson with the 20th overall pick in the NFL draft Thursday night and said they plan to plug him right in on the right side of their defense.

“He played for Nick Saban,” Houston defense coordinator Frank Bush said. “He played in a complex system, so picking up our stuff shouldn’t be a real task for him. But we’re going to give him every opportunity to be a starter for our football team and contribute.”

Jackson isn’t daunted by the thought of being thrown into a starting role as a rookie.

“I think I can step in,” he said. “I’m a quick learner.” …

Bush said Jackson was more attractive than other cornerbacks available, including Boise State’s Kyle Wilson and Devin McCourty of Rutgers, because of the level of competition he saw in playing for Alabama’s national championship team last season.

“He had some opportunities to go against the Floridas of the world and play against Arkansas and all those other type teams, whereas some of those other kids don’t play against that competition,” Bush said. “So we felt good about this guy being able to make the next step because he’s played against a lot of the same guys he’ll be playing against at this level.” …

The 5-foot-10, 196-pound Jackson joins a young defense led by middle linebacker DeMeco Ryans, who also starred at Alabama.

“I didn’t get a chance to play with him, but I watched him there with the Texans,” Jackson said of Ryans. “He’s a great player and I’m very excited to be on the same side of the ball with him.” (entire AP story embedded below)