New England Patriots

Jackson explains reason for punishment, admits ‘it was all my fault'

"I’m a professional. I know better than that."

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Patriots cornerback J.C. Jackson didn't play at the beginning of his team's Week 9 game against the Washington Commanders, and then he didn't even travel to Germany for a Week 10 matchup versus the Indianapolis Colts.

The Patriots lost both games to fall to 2-8 entering their bye week.

There have been a couple of reports about Jackson's recent lack of playing time, and he set the record straight after Wednesday's practice by admitting to MassLive's Mark Daniels that he missed multiple bed checks at the team hotel prior to the Commanders game.

“I was kind of late to bed check. They checked my room. I wasn’t there at the time,” Jackson told Daniels. “That’s what it was. It was nothing major. I wasn’t out that night doing anything stupid. It was just, I wasn’t where I was supposed to be on time. Little mistakes, man. I’m a professional, I know better than that. I’ve been around. I’ve never missed a bed check. Things happen. If I knew what that was going to cause (the punishment), I would have never done it.”

Jackson took responsibility for his mistakes, telling Daniels "it was all my fault." Despite the events of the last couple weeks, Jackson is adamant that the Patriots are the right team for him and that he's motivated to be better.

“Reality check – I’m not bigger than the team. I’m not bigger than nobody in here,” Jackson said, per Daniels. “This is a team sport and I have to do whatever everybody else is doing. I want to be a part of the team. This is my team. This is home for me, man. This is where I want to be. I don’t want to go nowhere else. I want to finish my career here also. I’ve just got to continue to build that leadership each and every day. It just stinks for me – I kind of played a lot of football. I know what to do at this point.”

The Patriots acquired Jackson as an undrafted free agent before the 2018 campaign, and he played four seasons in Foxboro before signing a five-year, $82.5 million deal with the Los Angeles Chargers as a free agent in 2021. After a brief tenure in L.A., the Chargers traded Jackson to the Patriots in October.

He has played in five games for the Patriots since the trade, tallying 14 tackles and three passes defensed.

It's possible that Jackson returns to the lineup Sunday when the Patriots travel to MetLife Stadium for their Week 12 game against the Giants. The Patriots waived cornerback Jack Jones last week, so they could use a veteran presence like Jackson in the secondary the rest of the season.

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