In Tuesday’s press conference featuring a kinder, gentler Philadelphia Eagles head coach, Andy Reid was asked about DeSean Jackson’s future with the team. Though Reid’s answer itself didn’t say very much, the way he answered the question was telling.
“I was proud of DeSean for standing up. I thought he showed maturity this season. I think he’s done that every year he’s been here, but he showed it. He stood up and admitted to everybody that he didn’t handle things the right way. I will tell you that the last six games, he did a nice job for us. I was proud of him for that. We’re going through all of that right now, so we’re looking at everything right now. We haven’t come to any conclusions on anything, but we’re going through that. Again, you saw progress there, you saw a different attitude the last five or six games there. You’ve got to make sure you look at that part too.”
While the remarks are complimentary, they are by no means a ringing endorsement of the wide receiver. Rather than a true testimonial, it’s a polite, noncommittal, “He’s a great guy” sort of response. Okay, Jackson did well in the last part of the season when he decided to stop sulking and that will be taken into account, but the first half of the season can’t–and won’t–be ignored.
Nothing was said about Jackson being an important part of the team, or a talented wideout and playmaker–none of that. Just remarks on the growth and maturity that, in all honestly, should be expected of any person in their early twenties after a few years on their own in the working world.
Reid was then asked if the team would commit long-term for Jackson. This response is even more telling than the first.
“We are going to go through and look at all that. I really haven’t gotten to that point. I have been making sure that we are kind of analyzing the free agents, we’re analyzing what we did, we went through our team, we’re going to analyze the draft and then you kind of put that all together and talk through it and have a feel on the whole picture on the personnel side of it.”
That is what you call a not-so-artful sidestep of the question.
Obviously Reid can’t reveal much of anything until offers are made and contracts are signed. But Reid’s comments, taken in conjunction with the report that little progress has been made between Jackson and the Eagles on a deal tell me that Jackson will be finding a home in another city next season.
Andy Reid provided some updates on a few Eagles players who are recovering from offseason surgeries.
LB Jamar Chaney: “Chaney is doing well. He can’t do much right now, but he’s doing well. They say the surgery went well. I don’t think we’ll know here for a little bit.”
TE Brent Celek: Likewise with Celek, he was up and moving right away, even though he was on crutches. He’s off the crutches, it looks like he’s moving around pretty well. So we’ll see. He had two things done, so it was a little different.”
DT Mike Patterson: “Patterson had the surgery, I talked to him yesterday and he’s doing very well. Early on they had him sedated pretty well. I want to say [he had the surgery] Friday of last week. He’s doing well—very upbeat and positive. It was a very long surgery. They had to dig in there to get to the spot and they felt like it was successful.”
Andy Reid’s comments provided courtesy of the Philadelphia Eagles.