DeSean Jackson has yet to sign with the Skins, but that seems like the place he’ll end up. My guess is that the Skins aren’t offering as much money as he’d like, but the sides are tying to work something out. A few people have responded to the news of DeSean to the Skins with something like this…”I knew this would happen. Cutting DeSean is going to blow up in the Eagles face. They’ll regret this for a long time.”
No matter how much you might hate the move or it might bug you that they got no compensation, do understand that this wasn’t some knee-jerk move by the Eagles. They knew exactly what they were doing. They knew DeSean could go to a division rival or to some NFC team that they could battle for a playoff spot.
Whether it was Chip Kelly or Howie Roseman that pushed more for the move, you can bet that both guys and owner Jeff Lurie were all on board with the decision. The Eagles are prepared to deal with the backlash of this move, both on and off the field.
By making such a dramatic move, the Eagles opened themselves up to all kinds of criticism. They are going to hear about it every time DeSean scores a TD. They’ll be mocked when he makes some huge plays this season, which a player of DeSean’s caliber is going to do. As much as that should make you scratch your head about why the Eagles would make such a bizarre move, it should also make you understand how strongly they felt about the move.
You don’t cut one of your most talented players on a whim. The Eagles think they can replace him on the field and actually get better off the field with DeSean gone.
No one denies that this move could bite the Eagles in the butt. This move absolutely carries risk with it.
Some of you say that the move just shows that Chip Kelly is arrogant. To a certain extent, I think the move does show some arrogance. But I’m not sure that is a bad thing. Andy Reid was a pretty dogmatic guy early on in Philly. He started compromising left and right later in his time with the Eagles and the team fell apart. Clearly that’s not the only reason, but I do think it had some effect.
Reid came to the Eagles with a plan. He thought about the long term and building a program. By the end of his time he was living in the moment and plans changed on a regular basis. The team did not respond well to that.
Like Reid, Kelly came to the Eagles with a plan. He has one eye on the present and one on the future. Kelly is trying to build the Eagles into a very specific kind of football program. The team responded well to the changes and moves of 2013. Now the test is to see how they handle Year 2.
Cutting DeSean is easily the most controversial move of the Kelly era. I don’t think that bothers Kelly one bit and that’s the one good thing about this move. Kelly isn’t afraid to go out on a limb. He’s got a very specific vision for how he wants the team. Kelly is going to do whatever it takes to get the team to that point.
Time will tell if he’s right (maybe), but I do think you need a coach who has that kind of confidence in his beliefs. You’re not going to build a great team playing it safe. You will need to take some chances.
I’m glad Kelly is the kind of coach that is willing to make bold moves. I just hope that bold moves in the future make a bit more sense.