The Philadelphia Eagles are releasing DeSean Jackson, according to a report from NBC Sports Philadelphia’s John Clark. UPDATE: The Eagles officially confirmed Jackson’s release.
Jackson confirmed as much by posting the following farewell messages to his Instagram story on Friday afternoon:
It’s safe to say Jackson’s second departure from Philadelphia is much less controversial than his first back in 2014. This development was expected, as we recently wrote about:
REVIEW: Jackson made headlines for the wrong reasons during the 2020 offseason by posting an image of an antisemitic message that was misattributed to Adolf Hitler. Pretty bad. The sincerity of his remorse was also drawn into question. Despite this, the Eagles stood by Jackson. Their faith in him wasn’t rewarded with on-field production as the veteran struggled to stay healthy once again. Jackson was placed on injured reserve after taking a late hit in Week 7. He then returned in Week 16 to catch an 81-yard touchdown bomb from Hurts, only to never see another reception.
OUTLOOK: Jackson’s second stint in Philly is likely coming to an end. The Eagles can cut him to clear about $4.9 million in much-needed cap space. It’ll be interesting to see if another team takes a chance on Jackson, who turns 35 this year. He clearly still has some juice when he’s healthy ... but he’s just never healthy anymore.
There was excitement when the Eagles reacquired Jackson about two years ago. He figured to be the solution to Philly sorely lacking a deep threat. Jackson teased us with eight receptions for 154 yards and two touchdowns in Week 1 of the 2019 season. Unfortunately, injuries prevented him from ever really making much of an impact beyond that. His second-highest yardage total since returning came in what was his final game with the Eagles. He burned the Dallas Cowboys defense for an 81-yard touchdown in Week 16 and never saw another target.
Jackson will go down as one of the most memorable players in Eagles franchise history due to his play-making ability. No one will ever forget his walk-off punt return touchdown to cap off The Miracle at the Meadowlands “Num-ber Two!”
People will also remember that his first stint in Philly was much more fruitful than his second. Howie Roseman’s decision to trade for Jackson and pay him a three-year, $27 million contract extension did not age well. Jackson was only available for about 10% of the Eagles’ snaps in 2019 and 2020 combined.
Jackson should probably retire but maybe another team will be willing to take a chance on him. For now, we know he definitely won’t be back in Philly.
Cap space update: We currently don’t know what the NFL salary cap will be set at for 2021, but it’s at least a floor of $180 million. Over The Cap currently has the Eagles OVER the cap by $47.3 million so the Jackson news brings the Eagles down to merely $42.4 million. Still a lot of work to do.