Staff writer Steve Fini continues his look at Eagles who need to step up after the bye week. Number four on his list is wide receiver Desean Jackson.
I was listening to the radio the other day and Brian Baldinger, a guy who I feel really knows how to break down game film, raised an interesting interesting question.
Should the Eagles get rid of Desean Jackson?
He wasn’t talking so much about Jackson’s ability or that he’s lost a step–but the Eagles, for a variety of reasons, have had difficulty getting Jackson the ball this season. He’s tenth in the league in yards (456), but ranks 39th in receptions (24).
So, is the inconistent Jackson be worth the big payday he seeks?
He’s been stellar this season, but has failed to be the explosive playmaker we are accustomed to seeing. Against Washington, the Eagles tried to get him the ball on a variety of different routes, but didn’t have much success.
Baldinger believes fellow receiver Jeremy Maclin is the clear number one option in the passing game. If they can’t scheme to get Jackson the ball, then there is no reason to pay him big money going forward.
And that’s why the second half of the season is so important for Jackson. Not only do the Eagles need the big plays from Jackson, but Jackson needs to prove himself worthy of the contract he seeks.
Maclin, for his part, has shown the ability to be a consistent number one receiver. Opposing defenses will likely begin rolling coverages towards Maclin (who is second among NFL wide receivers with 37 catches), which should present more opportunities for Jackson.
The Eagles coaches need to do a better job of creating ways to get the ball in Jackson’s hands. With Maclin emerging, Jason Avant proving he can make plays underneath and an emerging (we hope) Brent Celek, Jackson should see more chances the rest of the way.
He is an amazing talent and frees up space for the other offensive options, but he needs the ball in his hands to maximize his abilities, take the Eagles’ offense to the next level and get paid, of course.