Desean Jackson has been the main culprit of most Oakland Raiders headlines since his release with the Philadelphia Eagles, from reportedly reaching out to the Raiders before his release due to his interest from cheering for the team growing up and being from California to the alleged gang ties that NJ.com brought up (and the LAPD along with high school coaches dismissed) Jackson’s name has been brought up a lot over the past couple of days.
With Jackson meeting in Washington on Monday and this morning, Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio dropped a juicy report that the Raiders may actually be less interested in Jackson than expected despite the clear interest from the team’s fanbase in bringing in the mega-talented wideout. Citing his issues as a stereotypical “diva wide receiver” league sources told Florio that McKenzie may have more concerns about Jackson’s on the field, in the lock room issues than anything to do with gang ties.
As one league source explained it to PFT, G.M. Reggie McKenzie is leery about Jackson. Not because of the trumped-up gang ties (the more we read the supposedly groundbreaking NJ.com article about suspected gang ties, the less hard news we actually see in it), but because of Jackson’s reputation as a me-first player who can’t be controlled.
While the Raiders have been buying up plenty of veteran free agents, most are regarded as good teammates who’ll provide positive influences to the locker room. That’s not the reputation Jackson enjoys.
While Raiders quarterback Matt Schaub has made a public pitch for Jackson, one of the concerns is that Schaub has never had to control a potentially difficult receiver. Andre Johnson, Schaub’s long-time No. 1 target in Houston, is the anti-diva — a team-first guy who has never created many issues in Houston.
There is weight to this report as it could be very true that McKenzie is concerned about Jackson’s ability to share success as well as handle and share failures as while on a team that while improving in free agency is still in their rebuilding phase towards being a contender. If McKenzie feels that way it will be unlikely that he drops the reported $9-10 million asking price for Jackson, much at the ire of Raider fans who feel that Jackson is a crucial piece for returning to the playoffs in Oakland.