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Fantasy Football Free Agency: DeSean Jackson To The Philadelphia Eagles

Fantasy Football Free Agency: DeSean Jackson To The Philadelphia Eagles
Davis Mattek March 12, 2019 9:19AM EDT

DeSean Jackson Traded Back To The Philadelphia Eagles

After spending three seasons in Washington and two years as a Tampa Bay Buccaneer, DeSean Jackson has returned to Philadelphia to play his age 33 season. This likely will have greater impacts on the secondary Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receivers/tight ends and the overall Philadelphia Eagles offense than it will on DeSean Jackson’s specific fantasy football stock.

The fact is that the role that DeSean Jackson is going to play is similar to the one that Nelson Agholor played last year, Torrey Smith played in 2017 and the role that the team wanted Mike Wallace to play last season but was never healthy enough to do. Nelson Agholor is flat out bad as a perimeter receiver. He is neither fast enough nor physical enough to consistently generate separation and convert his routes into catches while playing on the outside. While playing in the slot, however, he posted a 95 target and 8 touchdown season in 2017 while grading out efficiently. The Philadelphia Eagles want Agholor to return to the slot, free up Zach Ertz over the middle and retain Alshon Jeffery in his current role.

There is a positive benefit here for at least one player in fantasy football and that is Chris Godwin. Godwin played without Jackson in four games in 2018. In those four games, he went 5/68, 3/98, 7/111/1, 5/101/1 while seeing a 24% market share of the Bucs passing targets. With Bruce Arians and his vertical passing offense in town, I am expecting no real drop off from the Tampa Bay offense and think Godwin could end up finishing the season as a top-15 fantasy wide receiver.

DeSean Jackson, the Philadelphia Eagles & Fantasy Football

The likelihood that a 33-year old DeSean Jackson gets the fire back in his engine and has a WR2/3 fantasy football season are pretty slim. The Eagles do not even really want him to be that productive by the numbers. The elite skill that Jackson has is long speed. He can bring a corner and a safety 40 yards away from a play faster than almost any other wide receiver in the league. He will leave the middle of the field open for Zach Ertz and peel safety help away from Alshon Jeffery. For many years, Jackson has also been the best drawer of defensive pass interference penalties. All of these things make DeSean Jackson a smart real football signing while making it uneventful for fantasy football. He will remain a solid Best Ball value pick as he will likely provide a few weeks of spiked value.

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