PHILADELPHIA – Philadelphia released DeSean Jackson on Friday after growing concerns about the Pro Bowl wide receiver’s off-field behavior and the effect it would have in the locker room.
It ended Jackson’s five years in Philadelphia after weeks of speculation that he would be traded despite the fact that the 27-year-old Jackson had his best season under coach Chip Kelly. It comes during a suspicious offseason that started in January when Jackson’s South Philadelphia home was burglarized in a case that still does not have suspects.
The move was made less than one hour after an NJ.com report of Jackson’s alleged gang connections, including Los Angeles Police Department linking two murders since 2010 to gang associates of Jackson. In a statement, Jackson denied that he’s a gang member and called reports misleading and unfounded.
The Eagles were not made aware of the report until this week and did not release Jackson entirely because of the report. Rather, it was because of the mounting issues that the team had with their star player, which is why the team had been trying to trade Jackson this offseason.
The new information, along with what they already knew of Jackson, made the Eagles fear what else they don’t know, which was the impetus for making the move on Friday.
No Eagles official was available for comment – from owner Jeffrey Lurie to general manager Howie Roseman to Kelly. Instead, they let the story of jettisoning one of their marquee player fester without explanation.
The team instead released a statement that said: After careful consideration over this offseason, the Philadelphia Eagles have decided to part ways with DeSean Jackson. The team informed him of his release today.
Around the league
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San Francisco re-signed cornerback Perrish Cox to a one-year contract. In a whirlwind two months last season, the three-year veteran went from San Francisco, to playing for Seattle and back to the 49ers – then participating in all but one defensive snap in a 23-20 wild-card playoff win at Green Bay in January.