Wednesday, June 18, 2014
Eagles coach 'enjoyed' coaching Jackson
By John Keim
ASHBURN, Va. -- The Washington Redskins wanted his speed. They craved his playmaking ability. For the Philadelphia Eagles, it came down to DeSean Jackson's size. Perhaps there were other reasons they released him, though none have been publicly stated. Mostly, those in Philadelphia haven't talked much about why they moved on from Jackson, calling it a football decision only.
But his former receivers coach provided a bit of a clue earlier this week.
"We're a team that likes having bigger receivers. It's no different than anybody else," Eagles receivers coach Bob Bicknell told reporters earlier this week. "We are big on the run game with blocking and those kind of things. Really it was just a decision to move on."
At 5-foot-10, 178 pounds Jackson is not a big guy. He also caught 82 passes for 1,332 yards last season. In the Eagles' system, just like in Washington's, it's important for the receivers to block well because of how they use the outside in the run game.
Bicknell was on the receiving end of a Jackson sideline tantrum during a game against Minnesota. But the Eagles' coach said he had no problems with Jackson.
"I enjoyed coaching him. I enjoyed the year I had with him. As a coach, you move on so quickly," Bicknell said. "Once that decision was made, I moved on. I wish him nothing but the best. He did everything I asked him to do."
Meanwhile, Jackson has clearly moved on and is adapting to life back in the West Coast offense. It's similar to the one he played in under Andy Reid with the Eagles, which has allowed for a smooth transition. He already feels comfortable with Jay Gruden's playbook.
"Some of the terms are the same. That's the biggest difference for me [after] last year in Chip Kelly's offense," Jackson said, "to get back in the mood of the West Coast offense. I got the terminology down. I'm at a great speed right now. I feel great."