Wide receiver DeSean Jackson got off to a rough start Sunday, dropping what would have been a 50-plus-yard pass on the first play from scrimmage.
However, Jackson rebounded and caught six balls for 171 yards including a 61-yard reception in the third quarter. Sadly, his contribution was not enough, as the Eagles struggled to score in the red zone and were able to muster just 23 points on the day in a one-point loss to the 49ers. The Pro Bowl receiver was frustrated after the Eagles endured a third-straight loss in which the team led in the fourth quarter.
"The same things have been happening, and at some point, we're just going to have to go out there and do something differently," Jackson said. "No matter if you're playing the worst team or the best team in the NFL, we need to bring our 'A' game every snap. Today, we were in great shape and just didn't finish. We couldn't put points on the board in the second half. Whenever you have a 20-point lead in the NFL, you need to hold it. Our mentality needs to be to step on our opponents' throats when we have a lead and to finish. Today, we just didn't execute."
The Eagles made it a point to get their big-play receiver involved early and often. After just two catches for 51 yards and no touchdowns in the past two games, Jackson was targeted nine times on the day. It took a while, however, for Jackson and quarterback Michael Vick to make their connection. On the second pass targeted deep for Jackson, 49ers cornerback Carlos Rogers beat Jackson one-on-one for the ball while Jackson looked for the pass interference call.
But the Eagles stayed the course and Jackson's two biggest catches were after the 49ers scored. Early in the second quarter, after David Akers gave the 49ers their first points of the game, Jackson caught a 45-yard pass to help set up an Alex Henery field goal to make it 10-3 Eagles.
After the 49ers cut the lead to 23-17 in the third quarter, Jackson caught the 61-yard pass to inspire his teammates and the crowd at Lincoln Financial Field. But Henery missed the eventual field goal attempt and the numbers aren't important for Jackson when the end result isn't an addition to the win column.
"None of that stuff matters if we lose the game," Jackson said. "In my time here, we've never started 1-3, so it's very upsetting. But, this is a long season, and we need to keep fighting. Now we just need to go and win out."
Jackson still believes in this team and knows that it has enough talent to beat any team in the league. The key, he says, is for every player to go out there and play up to their ability.
"I know our team is much better than what our record states," Jackson added. "A lot of people are probably giving up on us at this point, but we couldn't care less. We have a job to do inside this locker room. We're supposed to go out there and play as a team and try to win as many games as possible. We still have 12 games left."
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