The hottest name on the NFL free agency circuit right now is DeSean Jackson, who appears destined for release in Philadelphia. Which teams will gun for him?
New York Jets
A reunion with Michael Vick is something the New York Jets would love nothing better than to accomplish. They already have their reliable #2 possession receiver in Eric Decker locked up. Now they could use that legitimate speed threat who can threaten defenses deep. The Jets have the motive and the means and a leg-up since they have a former teammate under contract.
New England Patriots
Recent event clearly showcase that the New England Patriots aren’t waiting around anymore. They are loading up for a Super Bowl run and money is no longer a huge object. Already the defense has undergone a makeover at the skill positions with Darrelle Revis and Brandon Browner. They also added Brandon LaFell at receiver but still could use a more dangerous threat for Tom Brady. Jackson would love the opportunity.
Kansas City Chiefs
If anybody knows how to uses DeSean Jackson on offense, wouldn’t it be the man who originally drafted him? Andy Reid brought the enigmatic wide receiver into NFL when he coached the Eagles. Now he’s head honcho of the Kansas City Chiefs, a team that is on the lookout for more speed at wide receiver to help compliment Dwayne Bowe. Jackson would be working under a familiar face in a familiar offense.
This situation might very well represent the last chance in free agency for the Carolina Panthers to achieve what they’ve failed repeatedly to do, which is give Cam Newton desperately needed help at wide receiver. Steve Smith is gone and so is LaFell and Ted Ginn. They have to make this signing happen regardless of their conservative cap situation.
San Francisco 49ers
Nobody should ever discount the dark horses when it comes to free agency and the San Francisco 49ers are a classic example. They always seem to land quality talent when least expected and DeSean Jackson represents a huge steal opportunity. Colin Kaepernick needs more speed on the field with Anquan Boldin and Michael Crabtree. It will be a tight cap fit, but the allure of winning will certainly help their negotiating tactics.
Is it the most practical landing spot? Probably not. However one can never dismiss the possibility. The Chicago Bears recently parted ways with two of their key receivers in Earl Bennett and Eric Weems. A need is there to fill the third receiver spot between Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery. Can one imagine a speed threat like Jackson playing between those twin towers? Scary.
Another team with the roster spot, but importantly the money. The Cleveland Browns in all likelihood are taking a quarterback early in the draft. He is going to need protection and weapons. They already have Josh Gordon and Jordan Cameron in place for size but the Browns have no real deep threat to speak of. Adding Jackson to the mix makes loads of sense provided Mike Pettine feels he can handle the receiver’s colorful personality.