There has been a lot of talk recently about former Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson and his fit with the Jets. Jackson was on the trading block and it was rumored (and spoken about by Woody Johnson) that the Jets had interest. No one made a trade offer to the Eagles so they released him this week and he is now a free agent. Nine teams reached out to Jackson, none of which were the Jets. The argument for Jackson is that he is an excellent wide receiver that fills an obvious need and is only 27 years old. He has ties to Marty Mornhinweg, who was his offensive coordinator in Philadelphia, and Sanjay Lal, who was an offensive assistant while Jackson was at the University of California. Not to mention newly signed Michael Vick played with Jackson and the two are close friends. That being said there are many arguments against, I will go over them in this article.
1) Character - If there is one thing that John Idzik has emphasized in his tenure it is the importance of character in the team’s decision-making. Each time Idzik does an interview it is one of the 1st things he mentions. DeSean Jackson has been difficult in the Eagles locker room. He has openly complained about his contract, repeatedly, and decided to take it easy during his contract year so he made sure not to get hurt before he cashed in. I’m not going to count any of the allegations of ties to gang members in Jackson’s past because those are speculative and he would have no suitors if those rumors were true. The reactions of the Eagles players were enough to show me he was a distraction as the players weren’t rushing to his defense, and Jason Kelce went as far as to laud the decision to release Jackson on Twitter.
2) Draft - The 2014 NFL Draft is one of the most stacked drafts of all-time for receivers. This is a great year to have a need at receiver and to find yourself a difference-maker. Sammy Watkins, Mike Evans, Odell Beckham Jr., Brandin Cooks, Jordan Matthews, Kelvin Benjamin are out there just to name a small few. If the Jets signed Jackson they would get a player who would cost $10 mil/year or more and would be 30 by the time the contract ends. Drafting a rookie gives you a whole rookie contract of four or five years before they get paid. What is the point of being in such a great wide receiver draft if you are going to pass on the prospects? If they signed Jackson they would not need to go wide receiver in the 1st 3 rounds at least and if it didn’t work out they would be stuck drafting a wide receiver in another draft with less talent in it.