In a shocking development to many, the Philadelphia Eagles have decided to release wide receiver DeSean Jackson. It’s hard to fathom why the Eagles would take this sort of action against Jackson, who is the epitome of a game-breaking receiver. Jackson had his best season for the NFC East champion Eagles in 2013, recording 82 receptions for 1,332 yards and nine touchdowns. In his six-year NFL career, Jackson averaged 17 yards per catch to go along with 32 career receiving touchdowns. He’s also a three-time Pro Bowl selection who’s in the prime of his career at 27 years of age. These statistics reaffirm Jackson’s proficiency in the passing game.
While Jackson’s on-field talent is undeniable, it’s whom he decides to affiliate himself with off the field that has caused concern for some. It’s been said that Jackson has gang-affiliated ties, a charge that he denies. It’s also been said that Jackson has affiliations with two gang members tied to homicides. While those are serious claims, that shouldn’t matter one way or the other. That’s because there’s no evidence that Jackson himself is tied to those claims. If Jackson was 100 percent attached to those claims, then law enforcement would have imprisoned him long ago. But he hasn’t been linked to those homicides, so there’s really nothing to talk about.
To say that the Washington Redskins could use a talent like Jackson is like saying the media talks too much about Kim Kardashian. Jackson is a supreme talent who is a threat to score a touchdown every time he touches the ball. Ask the New York Giants, who were victimized by Jackson’s dramatic 65-yard punt return for a touchdown, giving the Eagles a 38-31 victory in 2010 as time expired. I could even ask the Redskins themselves. During a 2010 Eagles-Redskins game, Washington saw Jackson score on an 88-yard touchdown reception on the first play from scrimmage. Philadelphia wound up winning that game 59-28.
I’ve already shared my view regarding Jackson’s on field exploits. The current Redskins’ roster doesn’t have anyone who can come close to what Jackson brings in terms of talent and explosiveness. He inspires fear in opposing NFL defenses. Washington quarterback Robert Griffin III once inspired that sort of fear. But injuries and regressive play have reduced him to being an average quarterback instead of a great one.
Yes, Jackson would be a great fit in Washington. But that’ll never happen, because it’ll cost a lot of money to sign him. The Redskins have already signed a wide receiver in Andre Roberts, whose career accomplishments pale in comparison to Jackson’s. Washington still needs to address issues at safety and their offensive line, and they’ve already spent the majority of their allotted free agency funds to mainly solidify the defense. Simply put, the Redskins may not be able to afford Jackson.
There’s no doubt that Jackson will attract several teams, as his talent is just too seductive for NFL teams to pass up (not that they should pass him up anyway). Still, the Redskins may have to consider passing on Jackson, and hope they can address their other roster needs.