Eagles Release DeSean Jackson Amid Gang Tie Speculation; Jets Consider Picking Up Pro Bowler
The Philadelphia Eagles have decided to release their Pro Bowl wide receiver DeSean Jackson due to alleged gang ties – freeing him up for a possible deal with the New York Jets.
DeSean Jackson Headed To The Jets?
Although Jackson’s life off the field was troubling enough for the Eagles front office to drop him after one of his most successful seasons in the NFL, the New York Jets – who are desperately in need of a solid receiver – could still be interested in picking him up, reported the New York Daily News.
“We’re looking at a number of players, including DeSean,” Jets owner Woody Johnson said last Sunday. “He’s a very good player, but we’re looking at a number of them.”
At 27 and coming off a season with 82 receptions for 1,332 yards, Jackson is arguably in his prime. Sweetening the deal for the Jets is the fact that Jackson previously played for Jets offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg when he was at Philadelphia.
In total, six teams have reportedly made contact with Jackson following his release. In addition to the Jets, both the Carolina Panthers and The Chiefs – coached by Jackson’s former Eagles coach Andy Reid, have reportedly expressed interest in the dynamic wide receiver.
Eagles Release DeSean Jackson
The Eagles made Jackson’s release official on Friday. “After careful consideration this offseason, Eagles decide to part ways with DeSean Jackson,” the statement read. “The team informed him of his release today.”
After careful consideration this offseason, Eagles decide to part ways with DeSean Jackson. The team informed him of his release today.
— Philadelphia Eagles (@Eagles) March 28, 2014
Along with the announcement of the Eagles decision came reports that their decision had a lot to do with Jackson’s gang ties in LA – specifically with the Crips. During a matchup against the Washington Redskins last year, Jackson allegedly threw up a Crips sign, which he’s apparently flashed in a music video and in an Instagram picture as well, reported NJ.com.
DeSean Jackson Denies Gang Ties
Since the report about his gang ties came out, Jackson has vehemently denied the allegations, calling them “misleading and unfounded” and “reckless and irresponsible.”
“I would like to address the misleading and unfounded reports that my release has anything to do with any affiliation that has been speculated surrounding the company I keep off of the field,” Jackson wrote in a statement. “I would like to make it very clear that I am not and never have been part of any gang. I am not a gang member, and to speculate and assume that I am involved in such activity off the field is reckless and irresponsible.”
“I work very hard on and off the field and I am a good person with good values,” the former Eagle added. “I am proud of the accomplishments that I have made both on and off the field. I have worked tirelessly to give back to my community and have a positive impact on those in need. It is unfortunate that I now have to defend myself and my intentions. These reports are irresponsible and just not true.”
If the Jets sign Jackson, he’ll be joining fellow former Eagle, quarterback Michael Vick, and former Denver standout receiver, Eric Decker.
– Chelsea Regan