Wednesday, April 2, 2014
Shed no tears for missing out on DeSean
By Rich Cimini
DeSean Jackson is poised to sign a three-year, $24 million contract Wednesday with the Washington Redskins, and you know what that means: More criticism for John Idzik, who apparently didn't reach out to Jackson's agents. You can almost predict the narrative: The Redskins buy a Cadillac, the Jets get stuck with a Ford -- Jacoby Ford, a fast, but unproductive, injury-prone receiver, whom they signed Tuesday to a one-year contract.
In this case, Idzik made the right move by sitting out the Jackson sweepstakes. Yes, there was some internal interest, but when it came down to making the final call, Idzik wisely took a pass.
The price was exhorbitant ($16 million guaranteed), and there's no way they were going to pay that much after giving Eric Decker a $15 million guarantee. Money aside, there were character questions, with concerns about how he'd fit in the locker room. The Jets have a potentially volatile quarterback situation involving Geno Smith and Michael Vick, one of Jackson's best friends, and the last thing they needed was Jackson taking Vick's side and stirring controversy.
The Redskins get a terrific talent, no doubt, but it should be noted that Jackson didn't produced what could be termed a monster year until he hooked up last season with Chip Kelly. He played a career-high 942 snaps in the Philadelphia Eagles' up-tempo offense, affording him more opportunities than usual.
The draft is loaded with receivers, so the Jets should be able to find a cost-effective version of Jackson -- not immediately, but a player who can develop over time. In case you haven't noticed, Idzik is taking his time with just about everything.