34-year-old wide receiver DeSean Jackson was released by the Philadelphia Eagles.
He was a salary cap casualty as he was expected to make $5.8 million in 2021.
With that being said, is DeSean Jackson a player that the Raiders should consider adding to its roster in 2021?
The answer is no, and here is why.
At 34, DeSean Jackson’s best years are behind him.
His career best season was in 2013 during his first stint with the Philadelphia Eagles.
He had 1,332 receiving yards and 9 touchdowns.
Since then, his career has taken him through Washington, Tampa Bay, and back to Philadelphia.
His last 1,000+ yard season was in 2016 when he had 1,005 yards and 4 touchdowns.
There is no doubt that DeSean Jackson is still fast and can get behind defenders, but he is not the threat he once was.
Jackson himself would disagree with that sentiment evidenced by his tweet following his release where he calls himself “the best deep threat in NFL history.”
DeSean Jackson says he's "looking forward to my next chapter" and thanked Philly on IG amid reports that he's been released by the Eagles pic.twitter.com/F7RwTeeZMe
— B/R Gridiron (@brgridiron) February 19, 2021
Though both Jackson and Raiders Coach Jon Gruden traveled through Philadelphia and Tampa Bay during their careers, they never crossed paths so it is not as though Gruden and he have a prior working relationship that Gruden may want to revive.
Jackson was back with the Eagles for the 2019 and 2020 seasons.
Yet his name was barely mentioned in the box score because he was dealing with many injuries.
Jackson had a core muscle injury in 2019 and an ankle injury in 2020.
He only played in 8 games out of the past 32.
Jackson accumulated 3 receiving touchdowns and 395 yards in total for 2019 and 2020.
He added a rushing touchdown in 2020.
3. Other Options
At this point, the Raiders must have other more viable wide receiving options, including practice squad and roster players, that could be more of a sure bet.
The Raiders announced they were releasing WR Tyrell Williams; he was injured in 2020.
They also announced they are bringing back Keelan Doss in 2021.
Doss was a UDFA who has ping ponged around between Oakland/Las Vegas and Jacksonville.
Maybe the Raiders are looking to hone young talent like Doss.
Draft picks are possibilities though the Raiders are notorious for not drafting well, and defense is expected to be a focal point for the Raiders in the upcoming draft.
The Las Vegas Raiders have had the most 1st round picks (7). Their record has been 25-39
The LA Rams have had the least (0). There record has been 43-21
Draft picks are important, but only when you make good picks
Also trading for big time players can pay off…
— Raiders Report Mitchell Renz (@MitchellRenz365) February 3, 2021
Nobody Knows What Gruden Will Do
Despite all of this, Jon Gruden is a bit of a loose cannon.
No one knows what to expect from him.
Maybe he will roll the dice and try to sign DeSean Jackson on the cheap.
After all, he does like veteran players.
Maybe we are focusing on the wrong DeSean/Deshaun.
A new report suggests that the Raiders could be open to trading Derek Carr and pursuing Deshaun Watson https://t.co/nWwejD3JS7
— ProFootballTalk (@ProFootballTalk) February 3, 2021
The Raiders (like other rumored teams) could be honing in on Texans QB Deshaun Watson.
Gruden has never fully embraced Derek Carr as his starting quarterback; he inherited him.
How the Raiders enhance the offensive roster in 2021 is still a mystery, but it will be interesting to see what GM Mike Mayock and Coach John Gruden decide to do.