Chip Kelly’s most controversial decision as head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles came when he released three-time Pro Bowl wide receiver DeSean Jackson. Jackson was coming off career-best numbers (82 receptions for 1,332 yards) and had played a major role in the development of quarterback Nick Foles.
The actual decision for releasing Jackson likely combines an element of his salary, his less-than-ideal frame and his apparent defiance to the Kelly way of ball. Kelly made sure to replenish the position in the NFL draft, spending both his second- and third-round picks on wide receivers.
The organization also re-signed both Jeremy Maclin and Riley Cooper, the former to a one-year deal and the latter to a five-year contract. Still, Cooper is the only receiver on the roster Foles has played with for more than a few games, and it’s difficult to envision that Jackson won’t be missed.
Most teams usually go with five to six receivers on their official 53-man roster, which means the Eagles will have to cut at least half of the 13 wide receivers they currently employ. Here are the eight most likely candidates to make the 2014 team.