DeSean Jackson arrived in Eagles camp for the first time today, ending his less than two week holdout. Jackson, a two time pro bowler who is in the final year of his rookie deal and is set to make the league minimum this season, was obviously hoping his holdout would spur the Eagles to work out a new deal. However, team owner Jeff Lurie made it clear that the team doesn't negotiate with players who aren't in camp. Add that with the fact that the new CBA mandates that players report to camp prior to August 9th or lose a years credit toward free agency and Jackson didn't have much choice.
That said, he was rather upbeat and remains positive about the prospects of a deal getting done.
"The relationship I have with the team and the front office, I think everything will work out." Jackson said, "We're just going to keep everything positive, like I keep saying; I don't want to turn it into anything negative. I love Philadelphia, I love the fans here; and just coming back out here on the field, you know the fans just showing me a lot of love and things like that. I just want to keep that positive theme going."
Jackson says he's back 100% and will play and practice whether he gets a new contract or not.
"It won't be tough for me at all. Like I said, I know what I'm here for, and that's to play football. That's my livelihood. That's what I love to do, so at the end of the day man I'm just going to keep going out there with a smile on my face regardless of ups and downs. I know where my destination is, and my destiny is to be here and to be an Eagle. So I just want to, like I said, just keep doing the right things and working hard and hopefully everything pans out."
He also stressed that just because he held out, doesn't mean he's unhappy with the team or doesn't want to be here. He just feels like he's earned a new deal, but realized the best chance he has to get it is come back to work.
Me coming back and talking to Coach Reid, we just kept it all about football, you know, bettering myself and being a better football player, coming to work, working hard every day. There's always a point where you can get better. You never feel satisfied where you're at as a professional. I think where I'm at, my first three years, the things I've accomplished, it's been off the chart, but there's still always room for improvement. That's one thing I realize. Being an Eagle this year is going to be something I look forward to. I always wanted to be an Eagle; because I held out for a couple days, or whatever it was, that doesn't mean I didn't want to be an Eagle. Like I said, I just had to handle what I needed to handle, but I'm here and I'm ready to move forward. I'm ready to play football. I'm ready to help win games. I said I love this city and everything."
DeSean arrived in camp with his agent, Drew Rosenhaus, in tow. However, all said, this couldn't have gone more differently than the last time Drew Rosenhaus came to town with a high profile Eagles WR looking for a new deal...