2023 NFL Draft

Shrine Bowl Interview: Texas DB D’Shawn Jamison Has Playmaker Mindset

D’Shawn Jamison, a player who initially had my eye on as one of the five cornerbacks to watch ahead of the Shrine Bowl, is a dynamic cornerback and return man out of Texas, where he was able to score touchdowns via a pick-six, a punt return, a pair of kick returns kick return, and a scoop and score off a blocked kick.

Defensively, in total, he finished his college career with 139 tackles, six tackles for losses, one sack, one forced fumble, a pair of forced fumbles, six interceptions, 23 passes defended, and a touchdown via pick-six. On special teams, he returned 44 punts for 368 yards and a touchdown (long of 90/8.4 avg) and 54 kicks for 1435 yards and two more touchdowns (long of 100/26.6 avg), adding another score via a blocked field goal.


The fifth-year senior was a three-time Big-12 Special Teams Player of the Week, along with being named to the Paul Hornung Award Watch List in each of his final three seasons. The award, given to the collegiate player who has shown the most versatility, provides a fitting description of Jamison’s game.

Jamison’s dynamic ability was quickly recognized by the Longhorn coaching staff, as he was moved to wide receiver as a freshman after initially being recruited as a defensive back. While he only collected four receptions for five yards and toted four carries for eight yards, Jamison cites his time as a receiver as a catalyst in his defensive success against tough SEC competition.

“The experience was pretty cool,” he said at this year’s Shrine Bowl. “I mean, I take it as a learning experience just because I’m always going against receivers. I just brought that to my game once I got moved back to DB my sophomore year. The experience, I felt like it helped out with my game and also helped me realize what receivers do, when they run certain routes and cut they splits, and just small details like that.”


An advantage of playing under multiple different coaching regimes at Texas was gaining exposure to a wide variety of coverage schemes, experience that should serve as an advantage in Jamison’s transition to the next level. Jamison’s experience working under multiple defense’s with different schematic identities on the backend should serve him well as he transitions into a new system at the next level.

“It was mainly just Cover 4. It basically put me in a position to cover two guys, like two guys, and read more than two receivers on one side. And, shoot, Cover 3 was also a good coverage for me. I was able to show off my speed and my agility to match speeds with receivers on their deeper route concepts. Man to man, I mean, I was just able to show my quickness and my good footwork once I’m pressing up on the line, being able to mirror the receiver. That mostly happened on short downs, you know, when short and quick game stuff was likely coming. Other than that, when there was a lot of room and the situation was different, I just  played off and tried to show that I have good eyes and solid patience to calm down, trust my quickness, and be able to protect against deep balls.”


It is important for players to be self-aware and able to reflect on their game in transitioning to the NFL level, particularly at the defensive back position where precise technical refinement is a necessity in defending the game’s top receiving threats. Likewise, it was refreshing to hear Jamison give an honest evaluation of his current game, citing strengths and identifying areas for improvement as he continues to navigate through the draft process.

“I feel like one of the big things that I bring to the NFL is my speed and quickness near the line. A lot of people got that, but, you know, it’s just something that’s always been my game. I also bring physicality. The one thing I have to work on is being able to stay with bigger receivers. I know it’s a lot of bigger guys out there and I’m not that type of guy that’s tall. But I mean, I am that type of guy to go out there and play big, play a size bigger than me, and play physical.”

Arguably the biggest projected transition in D’Shawn Jamison’s transition to the next level is his projected move into the slot, a necessary transition at 5’9” and 185 pounds. Despite solid arm length for his frame, measuring in at 31 1/4”, Jamison seems to be aware and eager of a potential move inside at the NFL level. Needless to say, his physical demeanor should ease difficulties as he sees increased snaps in the box.

“Oh, yeah. That’s something I would love to do. I figured that’s most likely gonna be my game once I get to the next level. I know I won’t be able to play corner or whatever, so I know I’ll mostly be inside covering those fast, quick guys that play in the slot.”


Following 2022 East-West Shrine Bowl participant Dallis Flowers’ breakout rookie season as a return specialist in Indianapolis, where he led the NFL in kick return average, posting a figure north of 31 yards per return on 23 attempts, Jamison could offer similar special teams value. A playmaker in every facet of the game, Jamison has proven to be dynamic with the ball in his hands, even gaining some offensive touches in alley tackling drills in Shrine Bowl practice sessions.

In the modern NFL, slot cornerbacks are one of the most valuable, yet undervalued positions both in free agency and in the NFL draft, just ask Mike Hilton. When factoring in his potential to inject a dynamic element into a team’s return game, Jamison could certainly wind up being another late-round steal out of the East-West Shrine Bowl.


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