If speed kills well then DeSean Jackson is Ted Bundy. Jackson may possibly be the fastest man on the planet. It definitely looks that way at the ease he blows by cornerbacks and safeties, ripping apart defenses like losing Powerball tickets. He’s the bread to Vick’s butter, the sushi to his wine. Oh yea and he can catch a football too. DeSean Jackson has redefined the way the Eagles offense is run. Okay not entirely true, Andy has always been pass heavy but Jackson makes it that much easier. Putting an Andy Reid offense and run in the same sentence is rarer than a positive Philly sports phan headline. Needless to say DeSean Jackson makes the Eagles offense one of the most dangerous units in the NFL. #10 on the Best Athlete in Philly countdown is where you will find #10 of the Philadelphia Eagles.
On November 15, 2010 DeSean Jackson put on a clinic with LaRon Landry and the rest of the Washington Redskins in attendance. LaRon was so close to the action he could taste the dirt on the field. Or it could have been the fact that he had just become burnt toast on an 88-yard bomb from Vick to D-Jack on the opening play from scrimmage. Landry lay face down on the field still grabbing air and looking for his manhood after Jackson had embarrassed him on national television. He had it coming though after puffing out his chest at Jackson in a pre-game shove fest. Jackson finished the game with only 2 catches for 98 yards but the opening statement was enough as the Eagles doused the Skins 59-28 in front of the entire nation.
Dangerous, explosive, pure speed. Every championship team needs a home-run hitter, that playmaker who will make the big play when the spotlights on. The Eagles have a whole host of young, talented playmakers and DeSean Jackson is their go to guy.
After fighting back from a 31-10 deficit at the Meadowlands in December the Eagles had tied it all up in less than 8 minutes. With 14 seconds left in the 4th quarter and DeSean Jackson back to return the punt it looked as if a kick out of bounds would lead to overtime. To the turn your face red-anger of Tom Coughlin Giants punter Matt Dodge did the unthinkable and kicked it straight to the most dangerous man in football. #10 did the rest. Jackson struggled with the initial handle, backpedaled, but scooped the ball up and in what seemed to be perfect symmetry split the Giants apart with precision. With no time remaining Jackson proved he is that guy who can turn a game around in the blink of an eye.
He called for the ball like he always does with confidence and swagger. The kind of swagger that is rampant among NFL receivers. Arrogance is never at a loss when it comes to the spotlight lovers of football. We know all too well how that story goes, i.e. Terrell Owens. But there is something different about DeSean Jackson, a swagger that this Eagles offense has so desperately needed. The kind of overconfidence that you would hate on opposing players but can’t help but love from your own players. He backs up every word, every call for the ball. He makes opposing safeties wish they hadn’t said “night, night” and awoken a sleeping giant, all 5’10 of him. It made it even sweeter to watch Jackson backpedal, dance, and taunt his way to the end zone with every Eagles phan alive laughing all the way.
At 24-years old D-Jack has already built quite a football resume. Jackson ranks third all time at the University of California for receiving yards and receiving touchdowns. He also holds Pac-10 records for punts returned for a touchdown both in a season and in a career.
The Eagles stole Jackson in the 2008 NFL Draft in the second round with the 49th overall pick. His small frame was the only knock on the young man from Cal performing well in position drills at the combine and running a 4.35 40.
After early injuries to Kevin Curtis and Reggie Brown Jackson was the first rookie to start opening day under Andy Reid. Jackson went onto a stellar rookie season breaking the Eagles rookie record for receiving yards with 912.
Jackson has yet to disappoint. Selected to his first Pro Bowl in 2009, he followed it up with his second trip in 2010. Jackson became the first player in NFL history to earn Pro Bowl honors at two positions in 2009. He holds the Eagles record for the most receiving yards in his first three NFL seasons. In 2009 and 2010 he became the first Eagles receiver with back to back 1,000 receiving yards in a season since Irving Fryar in 1996, and only the 4th Eagle ever to accomplish that feat. In 2010 Jackson led the NFL with a 22.5 yards per catch average. D-Jack has averaged 47.2 yards per score on 26 career touchdowns, including postseason. If that stat doesn’t show you his big play ability I don’t know what will. Okay how about his 2009 average of 52.8 yards per score was the highest in NFL history among players with at least 10 touchdowns scored in a season. A record that had stood since Chicago’s Harlon Hill in 1956!
Well if you need a break from the stat laden resume that is DeSean Jackson, try chasing him around for 60 minutes. Now that has got to be exhausting.
"DeSean is one of the elite wide receivers in the National Football League. He's a tremendous football player who loves to play the game," Andy Reid said. "I love that he loves the ball. . . . He wants it, and he wants it now, and he wants it in crunch time. There are a lot of guys that would climb under this table in crunch time. He wants the ball. I like that; it's a beautiful thing."
Armed with killer speed, natural talent for miles, and a competitive nature that is unmatched DeSean Jackson has evolved into one of the most dangerous men in the NFL. He is extremely agile and flies so effortless past defenses with his quickness while running routes so fluidly. His speed, great route running, and hands make him one of the best in the game at his position. Add to that his special teams presence as the return man and it’s no wonder why #10 is known as “PLAY-MAK’A.” The nickname copied bold letter for bold letter from DeSean’s twitter account.
With an Eagles offense packed with talent it is no surprise to see many of the Birds make the top 20 list. DeSean Jackson may never quietly go about his business but his front page of the Daily News enthusiasm for the game has won the respect of Eagles phans alike. He has proven in only three seasons in the NFL that he plays way above his size. If confidence, swagger, and bravado were any indication of Jackson’s size well let’s just say he’d be Manute Bol.