DeSean Knows His Audience
PHILADELPHIA (973espn.com) - DeSean Jackson knows his audience and he’s playing to them.
The speedy receiver spoke to ESPN’s Adam Schefter and said finishing his career where it started would be a “great story.”
Jackson was run out of Philadelphia on a rail after a 2013 Pro Bowl season by former coach Chip Kelly and the Eagles have been unable to find a competent replacement in the ensuing years.
In fact, time has only contributed to Jackson’s legend as a home-run hitter while in Philadelphia and many fans are pushing for a reunion despite the fact that Jackson is now 30 and on the downside of his career.
During his three seasons in Washington, Jackson has never caught more than 56 receptions, although he did put together two 1,000-yard season and remains one of the game’s best deep threats who can pop the top of any defense.
“It definitely is a great story or ending, I guess you could say,” Jackson told Schefter on the latter’s podcast. “Starting your career somewhere then going to a division rival team [and] having the possibility of maybe going back. You just kind of think about all of that when you start somewhere maybe you could finish it”
Jackson also said he wants to play with a “great quarterback” and claimed that both Kirk Cousins and the Eagles’ Carson Wentz fits that description.
“I think (Wentz) killed it,” Jackson said. “He did lights out. He had a heck of a year. So definitely, he showed me he can do it, and he has all the intangibles of being a big-time quarterback in this league.”
The question for the Eagles becomes how much do you invest in a receiver on the wrong side of 30 who has limitations when it comes to size, strength, and route running.
For what it’s worth, Jackson claims he could play “at least another three or four years.”
“Not at all,” he said when Schefter asked him if he’s lost a step. “I really feel like I can still run low-4.3s and maybe 4.29, like I did when I came out of the combine. It’s really amazing. The game’s changed. You have guys like Tyreek Hill, Marquise Goodwin. You have all these guys that are so fast, and all the speed that comes into the NFL, but if you look, last year, I was the second-fastest player. They have the chip that they put on every guy in the NFL and I was the second-highest speed last year. Tyreek was No. 1, I was No. 2, so I don’t feel like I’m losing a step.”
In today’s NFL, a three- or four-year window is an eternity and a shelf life that would make a return engagement make a lot of sense from the standpoint of a team that desperately needs an outside-the-numbers threat for Wentz.
“There is just a lot of speculation of a lot of thoughts. It all sounds good, but you really never know until the final decision is made,” Jackson said. “I’m just a firm believer that if you work hard, you put in the work, continuously go out there and show everybody what you’re capable of [then] the sky’s the limit.”
-John McMullen covers the Eagles and the NFL for 973espn.com. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @JFMcMullen