DeSean Jackson set career-highs in receptions (82), receiving yards (1,332) and touchdowns (nine) in 2013, but that did not prevent the Philadelphia Eagles from releasing him after reportedly receiving no trade offers for him. The Washington Redskins signed Jackson to a three-year deal soon after his release, and he’ll give the team the big-play threat it largely lacked in 2013.
Jackson averaged 10.7 yards per target last season, with ties for the highest mark among wide receivers that fantasy owners would have paid attention to since no one who averaged more yards per target had more than 32 receptions. Not surprisingly, Jackson also finished ninth in the league in yards per catch (16.2) last year.
Something was clearly not right for Jackson in Philadelphia last year, with coaches, teammates or both. A change of scenery should do him a lot of good, and the opportunity to play against the Eagles twice a year brings extra motivation.
Jackson was only targeted 10 times in the red zone last year, and six of his nine touchdowns came from 25 or more yards out. It’s hard to rely on big plays in order to score touchdowns, and Jackson will not become a prominent red zone option in Washington. Pierre Garcon was targeted a league-high 184 times last season and tight end Jordan Reed is a player on the rise, so Jackson will not be the No. 1 option for Robert Griffin III on a weekly basis.
Jackson missed time in four straight seasons prior to last year, and his build (5’10”, 175 lbs.) makes durability a constant concern.
Jackson helped fantasy owners a lot with 10-catch, 195-yard, one touchdown effort in Week 15 against the Minnesota Vikings, but in the other four games from Week 13-Week 17 he had just 14 receptions for 152 yards and a touchdown.
2013 has the look of a career year for Jackson, and a likely drop-off in production should set the bar for his fantasy outlook this year. He is a viable WR2 in PPR leagues, which should not be overlooked, but I think owners that draft him expecting a repeat of last year will be left disappointed. Add in that he’s likely to be widely overvalued on the heels of a breakout season, and I don’t think I’ll wind up with Jackson on any of my fantasy teams this year.
Bye Week: Week 10
Projected Round: Fourth Round
Auction Value: $22 (ESPN.com)