The Eagles have had a free agency for the ages.
Having traded for Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, signing Nnamdi Asomugha, Cullen Jenkins, Vince Young and Ronnie Brown, the front office has gone out of its way to make a statement. No longer can anyone accuse them of being lackadaisical with their money. They are paying up to not only ensure that this team goes to the playoffs, but also makes a deep playoff Super Bowl run as well.
It’s easy to get excited when a team makes moves like this during the offseason. Asomugha and Rodgers-Cromartie upgrade the secondary significantly, even if disgruntled Asante Samuel is shipped off before the season starts. It would be ideal for all three corners to be on the depth chart come September, but I wouldn’t bank on it.
Defense wins championships, but offense also wins you games. This makes it even more important for the Eagles to get their nuclear weapon DeSean Jackson back onto the field.
Jackson is holding out due to contractual issues, but unlike some athletes who hold out DeSean actually has some credence behind his plight.
Let’s take a look at three reasons why DeSean Jackson deserves a new contract.
1. He is the biggest playmaker on the offense
This goes without saying, but without him the team loses their biggest threat and catalyst. Jackson is not only an individual threat, but he also helps stretch the field for more underneath options—whether it be Jeremy Maclin, Brent Celek, LeSean McCoy or Michael Vick’s scrambling abilities.
2. He is severely underpaid
Jackson is still on his rookie contract from 2008 when he was drafted in the second round, meaning that he is projected to make a measly $555,000 in base salary according to Eagles Cap.
That’s chump change for arguably the most explosive player in the game, who is capable of burning teams for an 80 yard score on any given offensive play. Jackson also helps the team out in other departments such as end around rushes and punt returns.
3. Nothing is guaranteed in the NFL
It’s okay for owners to cut players without warning if they feel they aren’t performing up to standards. Yet we criticize a player for wanting more money when he has clearly outperformed his contract? Look what the Eagles did to Leonard Weaver last week, cutting him after he suffered a devastating knee injury in week one last year.
Not only can Jackson single-handedly win football games for the Eagles, but he’s also taken a significant amount of punishment as well. Having suffered two concussions, including a catastrophic hit from Falcons’ corner Dunta Robinson last season, Jackson can’t afford to suffer any more injuries without an insurable contract that will pay him dividends.
The Eagles have been flawless in their A-gap blitz in free agency. There is no reason why they should start screwing it up now. Management shouldn't let a prolonged DeSean Jackson holdout put out the fire that has been the Eagles 2011 free agency.
Get your playmaker back in camp and let the 2011 season begin.