This week, on Sunday Night Football, the Eagles beat the New York Giants 17-10. The win propelled the Birds to a 4-6 record—keeping them relevant for another week of NFL action. But, this week’s conversation hasn’t been about the Birds win or Michael Vick’s status for next week or DeSean Jackson’s six catches for 88-yards. Instead, everyone is talking about DeSean Jackson’s taunting penalty.
Jackson had a 51-yard catch and run nullified after he tossed the ball toward the Giants bench and brushed his jersey off in their direction. The rule was enforced properly, which pretty much rewarded the Giants for committing a foul on the play. Its language certainly needs to be examined in the off season, but that hardly seems like the point right now. The real issue is DeSean Jackson’s ego.
He’s got the kind of vertical speed that makes safeties cheat and requires defensive coordinators to pop an extra Ambien before their heads hit their pillows. He’s not afraid to to go over the middle; the “Miracle at the New Meadowlands” was one of the most exciting plays I’ve ever watched. But, his talent, those numbers, and that play aren’t enough to marginalize the baggage he carries. The man is a diva and that is not something that Eagles fans are just now discovering.
Monday night, after the penalty, Jacksonville Jaguars kicker Josh Scobee called Jackson a punk on Twitter. He later apologized and attempted to clarify what he meant. But, in an effort to reinforce his original sentiment, here’s a timeline of DeSean Jackson’s attitude problem.
9/15/2008: The Drop
DeSean Jackson literally throws away a touchdown by dropping the ball to celebrate before he actually crossed the plane to score.
1/31/2010: Pro Bowl Taunting
Jackson earned a trip to the Pro Bowl by catching 62 passes for 1,056 yards and six touchdowns. He added a rushing score and a return for a touchdown as well. He represented himself and the Eagles in the Pro Bowl by picking up a penalty flag and throwing it around the field to taunt his AFC opponents.
12/10/2010: The Jerk
The Eagles edge Dallas 30-27 on Sunday Night Football. Jackson had four catches for 210 yards and a touchdown as Philly moved to 9-4 on the year. But, the next morning, everyone was talking about Jackson’s backwards fall into the end zone to finish off his 91-yard score.
6/30/2011: The Slur
Jackson goes on Sirius XM’s “All Out Show with Rude Jude and Lord Sear” tells a caller to say “no-homo.” He then called the man a “gay-ass faggot.”
7/28/2011: The Holdout
The NFL lockout had just ended and teams opened up training camp. The Eagles set up shop at Lehigh University without DeSean Jackson, who was holding out for a bigger contract. This didn’t make any sense because Jackson’s salary of less than $700,000 wasn’t big enough to cover the cost of fines that would accrue during a lengthy ordeal. He reported to camp in time to earn a year of service toward his pension.
11/13/2011: We Talkin’ ‘Bout Meetings
After missing a team meeting on Friday, DeSean Jackson is benched for the Eagles game against the Arizona Cardinals—a game they lost 21-17. The team’s tight end Brent Celek led the Birds in receiving yards on four catches for 54 yards in Jackson’s absence.
11/20/2011: 51-Yard Taunt
Jackson flips the ball toward the Giants bench and brushes off his jersey in their direction after a nice catch and run. His actions called for a 15-yard penalty that nullified a 51-yard play in a crucial game against a divisional opponent.