49ers general manager Trent Baalke denied reports that the 49ers have called the Eagles about Jackson for the second time at the NFL owners meetings on Tuesday. Jackson’s huge contract is one of the reasons the 49ers are likely reluctant to pursue him.
However if there were no restraints, the 49ers would be a terrific fit for Jackson. He is a field-stretching receiver, which is one of the 49ers’ few needs.
I reached out to ESPN analyst Louis Riddick. He was previously in the Eagles’ front office and he is well equipped to give an accurate scouting report on Jackson. He sees the football fit with the 49ers.
“From a pure X/O standpoint, he is a good fit for them if they are willing to utilize less 22 and 23 personnel (2 RBs/2 TEs/1 WR and 2 RBs/3 TEs) and use more personnel groupings that keep two or more WRs on the field,” said Riddick of the 49ers who used the fewest three-receiver sets in the NFL last season partly because they didn’t have a pure speed receiver.
“Furthermore, there has to be an understanding that he is not a physical presence in the running game as it pertains to blocking in the perimeter. If that understanding is good for them, there is no doubt he gives them what they don't have, and it is not just a 'deep' threat. The kid is a moveable chess piece that can play all three primary WR positions, can run routes and excel at all three levels of the defense, and is very dangerous on screens and reverses as a runner. Their locker room appears strong enough to be able to allow him to be him, but not tolerate anything less than an all-in/all-the-time attitude.”
While the fit is there on the field, it is highly unlikely it would be on the salary cap.