September 21, 2023

Eagles release DeSean Jackson for the 2nd time in 7 years


Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

The first time, it was a shocking. This time, it’s just another over-priced veteran getting shown the door. DeSean Jackson, the third-leading receiver in Philadelphia Eagles history, has been released.

“Looking forward to my next chapter,” Jackson wrote in his Instagram posts. “The best Deep threat in NFL history!! Coming to a city near you!! Philadelphia it’s always Love.”

By releasing Jackson, the Eagles will save nearly $5 million under their 2021 cap. Jackson was due an $8.2 million base salary on the three-year, $27.9 million deal he signed before the 2019 season. His cap figure would have been $10.66 million. Instead, he’ll count $5.8 million in dead money against the cap.

Jackson has earned a total of $39,104,335 from the Eagles, according to Spotrac, including $17.35 for his ill-fated second stint here.

Among all players in Eagles history, Jackson has been paid the 15th-most money and 2nd-most among wide receivers behind Alshon Jeffery ($47.15 million).

Jackson is the fourth veteran so far the Eagles are known to be cutting ties with. They’ve agreed to trade Carson Wentz to the Colts and are planning to release Jeffery and Malik Jackson in June.

Jackson, 34, spent his first six years with the Eagles before Chip Kelly released him in March of 2014. He spent three years with Washington and two with Tampa before returning to the Eagles before the 2019 season.

But he’s been hurt for virtually all of the last two years, managing just 23 catches for 395 yards and three TDs in his second stretch here. All three TDs were at least 50 yards, two in his first game back from Carson Wentz in the 2019 opener and an 81-yarder from Jalen Hurts against the Cowboys in his final game this past December. That was his only career reception from Hurts. Jackson only played eight games in two seasons.

Jackson ranks third in Eagles history with 6,512 receiving yards, trailing only Hall of Famers Harold Carmichael (8,978 yards) and Pete Retzlaff (7,412 yards). That 81-yard catch in his final game moved him ahead of Mike Quick (6,464 yards).

Including his seasons in Washington and Tampa, Jackson ranks 41st in NFL history with 10,656 career yards.

Jackson has scored an NFL-record 25 touchdowns of 60 yards or more, two more than Jerry Rice and four more than Devin Hester. That includes 20 receiving, four on punt returns and one rushing. He had another in the 2008 NFC Championship Game on a 62-yard, 4th-quarter catch from Donovan McNabb.

Jackson has made three Pro Bowl teams and had five 1,000-yard seasons, three with the Eagles and two with Washington. He’s led the NFL in yards-per-catch four times.

He’s turned in some of the most iconic plays in franchise history, most notably the historic 65-yard TD return of a Matt Dodge punt with no time remaining against the Giants in 2010. That capped an insane rally that saw the Eagles outscore the Giants 28-0 in the final 7½ minutes to win 38-31.

Jackson’s 17.4 career receiving average is third-highest in the NFL over the last 50 years.

DeSean Jackson will be headed to his fourth team in seven seasons.

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