Eagles Pro Bowl wide receiver DeSean Jackson is preparing for the season ahead with his training camp absence behind him. Jackson, who missed 11 days of camp, is hoping for a new contract, but he has pledged to be focused solely on football.
On Saturday night, another Pro Bowl wide receiver, Larry Fitzgerald of the Arizona Cardinals received a new contract of his own, reportedly worth $120 million over eight years, making him one of the highest paid players in the league. Shortly after news of the contract broke, Jackson tweeted his congratulations to his friend Fitzgerald.
"Congrats to my Big bro @LarryFitzgerald!! Well deserved.. Wideouts ballin!!," Jackson tweeted.
But after Monday's practice, Jackson said his congratulations had little to do with his own contract search.
"He got a contract, so of course that's a good friend of mine, I'm going to congratulate him," Jackson said.
Jackson added that comparisons between he and Fitzgerald are unfair because they're different types of receivers and Fitzgerald is entering his eighth season in the league, while Jackson is entering his fourth.
In Jackson's three seasons, he's averaged 57 catches, 1,041 receiving yards and six touchdowns. Over that same three-year span, Fitzgerald has notched an average of 93 catches for 1,220 yards and just over 10 touchdowns per season.
"The things he's done, he's been in the league of course a longer time than me," said Jackson. "It's his third deal. So as far as him being a different player than myself, comparing the type of receivers we are, he's a totally different type of receiver than I am. So we don't compare as far as receiver wise.
"He's a good player. He's one of the top receivers in the NFL like myself, so of course when it comes down to that, yeah, but money-wise or stats-wise, I don't compare any of that stuff. I just take care of what I have to take care of."
Jackson said "We don't know yet, we'll see," when asked if there has been any progress on a new contract with the Eagles, but emphasized that his focus remains on the field, where he does consider himself to be among the league's elite.
"Growing up I kind of looked up to Jerry Rice and Michael Irvin," he said. "But as far as receivers right now in the NFL, I don't really look up to any of them. I respect their game. There are a couple of great receivers out there. I just consider myself to be one of the best wide receivers in the NFL."