The AFC West's stockpiling of talent this offseason included receiver Davante Adams becoming a Las Vegas Raider and corner J.C. Jackson signing with the Los Angeles Chargers, setting up a battle between the newcomers.
Asked Tuesday about the prospect of shadowing Adams twice a year when the division rivals meet, Jackson flipped the script.
"They better be ready for us," he replied, via the official transcript. "I don't want to talk about him. They better be ready for us."
Jackson has eight-plus INTs in each of the last two seasons (one of three players with eight-plus INTs in consecutive seasons since 2000: Richard Sherman 2012-13 and Champ Bailey 2005-06). His 25 career INTs are tied for the most in a player's first four NFL seasons since the 1970 merger (tied with Lester Hayes and Everson Walls).
The ball-hawking Jackson is the cornerstone of the Chargers' defensive remake this offseason, which included adding edge rusher Khalil Mack and underrated defensive lineman Sebastian Joseph-Day. The trio will help bolster a unit that struggled in 2021 and was the main reason L.A. missed the playoffs.
Jackson said becoming a Charger was his No. 1 goal when he realized he wouldn't re-sign with the Patriots.
"I was telling my agent, I said, 'We're going to L.A.' I was telling him that from the beginning." Jackson said. "Having that relationship with Derwin James, first of all. It's a young, up-and-coming team. I just felt like it was the right move for me and my family."
Jackson played youth football with James, and now the two will form one of the rangiest safety-corner tandems in the NFL.
"It's crazy how it all comes back around in a circle. We knew each other back then, and now we get to play with each other? It doesn't get any better than that," Jackson said. "We go way back. We linked back up at the Pro Bowl. We were talking to each other every day. He was like, 'I'm going to get you up here. You need to come ball with me.' It happened. It's crazy. I'm excited, and I know that he's excited."