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Saturday, March 29, 2014
Woodson: Bring in Jackson

By Paul Gutierrez

While Oakland Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie stayed mum regarding the possibility of adding the potentially combustible DeSean Jackson to his roster earlier this week -- after all, Jackson was still technically on the Philadelphia Eagles' roster during the NFL owners meetings -- a Raiders player spoke out.

Free safety Charles Woodson, who will be entering his 17th season, told ESPN radio affiliate 95.7 The Game on Friday that Jackson would be welcomed in Oakland after the Eagles cut him earlier in the day.

"Bring him in, I think he would look good in the silver and black," Woodson said. "Of course I know the business side of it, but I've watched this guy and what he is, is a dynamic football player. What they're talking [about] as far as off-the-field stuff, I have no clue about. The team would have to do their homework as far as that's concerned.

"But when you talk about bringing in a guy as talented as he is, and you have that opportunity, I think you take a shot at it. And I think where we are as a team, we need all the playmakers we can have, and adding that guy would definitely help take us to the next level."

Reports have linked Jackson to gangs in his Los Angeles-area home. He has also been seen as a diva in the locker room. But he is coming off a career year in which he caught 82 passes for 1,332 yards and nine touchdowns.

Jackson, who knows the Bay Area well having played collegiately at Cal, is still relatively young at 27, and, as Woodson noted, he'd be the play-making, game-changing weapon the Raiders could use to jumpstart the revamped offense under new quarterback Matt Schaub.

But at just 5-feet-10, 178 pounds, you have to wonder how many big hits he has left in him to absorb, let alone his baggage. McKenzie places a lot of value in chemistry and did admit he could take a chance on such a big-money, big-name player, though he was not talking specifically about Jackson.

"As long as he's a really good player that we think is really going to elevate our team," McKenzie told reporters at the meetings, according to the Bay Area News Group. "I mean, big money, name is not the major issue; it's, what else he can bring to the table?

"Production is going to be a lot, but there's many other characteristics that fall into that."

Such as reputation?

"That's what you've got to sit down and figure that out, you know?" McKenzie said. "Reputation is what you've done in the past."

As far as Woodson is concerned, though, signing Jackson would have been a no-brainer for the late Al Davis.

"There is no question in my mind that this is the type of player that Al would bring in," Woodson said. "You hear about the off-field stuff but I don't think Al would concern himself with that too much. I think Al would do his homework. But I think he would take a serious hard look, and if there was an opportunity I think he would bring that guy in.

"DeSean can stretch the field, and we know how much Al loved having guys that can stretch the field. So I don't think there is any question he would bring him in."