Philadelphia Eagles DeSean Jackson Not Worth The Franchise Tag

Let me be clear, DeSean Jackson was underpaid during the course of his rookie contract.  Jackson entered the 2011 season desperately wanting a restructured, long term deal.  Instead, the Eagles balked at an extension and DeSean earned just under $500K.

This offseason, the Eagles franchised DeSean Jackson.  The franchise tag keeps DeSean for one years as an Eagle and pays him the average of the top five players at his position, wide receiver.  That number rounds out to a lofty $9.4 million.

To me, DeSean Jackson is over valued.  Granted, Jackson has been elected to two pro bowls.  Pretty good, but he is not a premier wide receiver in this league if you look closely at his numbers.

Jackson had a terrific rookie season.  He caught 62 passes for 912 yards, but he had only two touchdowns catches.  That is fine.  DeSean was a mere pup at that point.  Great season.

Jackson’s second season was by far his best.  DeSean caught 62 passes for 1156 yards and nine touchdown catches.  Those are the type of stats that number one receivers in the NFL put up year after year.

In Jackson’s third year, he was a big play guy.  That is cool if you like style over substance.  DeSean caught only 47 balls for 1056 yards and six touchdown catches.  He averages a whopping 22.5 yard per catch.

Last season, DeSean compiled 961 yards on 58 receptions with four touchdowns.  He did this why being the ultimate “me only” player.  Here is the fact:  the touchdowns are on the low end for number one receiver production.  I want more touchdowns.  The Eagles  need more touchdowns from him.

Here is the problem….DeSean Jackson is a little guy.  Jackson is generously listed at 5’10 175lbs.  Michael Vick is a smallish quarterback.  DeSean Jackson does not present a redzone threat that Vick can target and utilize.

Many believe that DeSean stretches the field and makes others better by creating more space for them.  If that were the case, the Eagles would have a better intermediate passing game.

Some experts compare DeSean Jackson to the Steelers speedy WR Mike Wallace.  Look at the numbers:  Wallace is more productive (24 touchdowns in three seasons; Jackson 21 touchdowns in four) and bigger (6’0 200 pounds).

The bigger problem the Eagles may have to contend with is whether DeSean Jackson will be happy playing on a one year deal.  With so many well graded receivers in the upcoming draft and plenty of top notch WR free agents (Vincent Jackson, Marques Colston, Steve Johnson, Mario Manningham, Robert Meachem), why even take the chance?  Here is another fact:  Jackson is too brash and will cause coaches and fans headaches at some point next year.


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  • Juca

    Miracle at the Meadowlands 2!!! More respect to D-Jax please!!!

  • Jason

    People kill me with this whole “redzone threat” thing……as if Desean Jackson has never caught a TD pass in the redzone before. Give me a break. The Eagles can go and get a tall receiver for that if they want to. It’s not a big enough issue to get rid of such a great playmaker like Djax just so you have someone to throw to inside the 20. Another thing; stop acting like he has an extensive history of being disruptive like T.O. was because that was never the case with him. He spent last season frustrated about his contract, but overall the coaches, the players and the fans all love the energy, swag, and excitement that he brings to the team. No one has a problem with Desean Jackson. If the Eagles want to compete for a Super Bowl, they’re going to need number 10.

  • Mike

    Desean has what you called the “intangibles”. Numbers don’t reflect how key he is to the team. He doesn’t get much catches cause he’s defended like no other. Jerry Rice puts him as his fav receiver in the league. The guy has speed and runs sharp routes. Untouchable.

  • Gloria

    DeSean is an explosive wide receiver, that I find entertaining and dyanic. He made me a football fan and I am 56, more important an Eagle Fan. No DeSean no Gloria for an Eagle fan. I think he should have been paid the money and that the Eagle franchise is holding out, but nevertheless, DeSean rose to the occassion and played the game despite what is happening with his contract. They over cover him and try to hurt him I do not like that. I just want DeSean to remain focus and play the game I hope it is with the Eagles, I’ve spent money on the Eagles went to two games when they played the Redskins and I want more than anything for DeSean to be happy. Please stay focused DeSean and do your best I will continue to lift you up you do your best even if the franchise stinks. Do not allow them to take your joy or your swag. DeSean is not a risk nor a problem. He is young and anybody with something negative to say are haters. Even Michael Irving said he should be paid the money.

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