In the first part of a series where ESPN will rank the top 10 players at each position in the NFL, the list of top 10 wide receivers has been unveiled and the Eagles' DeSean Jackson was ranked eighth overall.
The panel included John Clayton and the seven bloggers who each cover a division. It is interesting to wonder where Jackson could have ranked if Matt Mosley, the NFC East correspondent who recently left the network, had a vote. The eight voters each ranked their top 10 receivers and the player got 10 points for a first-place vote all the way through one point for a 10-place vote.
Jackson was on every ballot except for one (AFC South blogger Pat Yasinskas). Jackson ranked as high as sixth on two ballots (NFC West Mike Sando and AFC West Bill Williamson). Jackson was the only receiver to represent the NFC East and was fifth overall in the NFC.
Funny enough, on a recent episode of ESPN's Mike and Mike In The Morning, the two hosts debated whether Jackson was the premier offensive weapon in the entire NFL. The 5-10, 175-pound dynamo earned his second straight Pro Bowl nomination after catch 47 passes for 1,056 yards and scoring six touchdowns in 14 games as a receiver this past season. He also had a rushing touchdown and a punt return score in 2010. It was Jackson's second straight 1,000-yard campaign becoming the first Eagle to accomplish that during the Andy Reid era. Jackson was also tied for fourth in the Associated Press Offensive Player of the Year award vote. Only one other wideout received a vote.
Here are some other interesting nuggets of info from Stats Inc. that detail just how explosive of a receiver Jackson is. Jackson led the league with 22.5 yards per catch (min. 45 receptions). Against Dallas in Week 14, Jackson had 210 receiving yards which was the third-highest single-game total in franchise history. It was also just the third time in NFL history someone had 200 receiving yards on four or fewer catches.
In that Dallas game, Jackson put the Eagles ahead for good with a 91-yard touchdown which was the second-longest pass play in the league in 2010. In fact, Jackson had six catches of 50 yards and two of the four longest pass plays of the season.
A tone setter, Jackson was someone the Eagles looked to get involved early in the offense. Jackson was first in the league with 471 receiving yards in the first quarter of games and also first with five first quarter touchdowns. Jackson averaged 33.6 yards per catch in the first quarter of games last season.
On first downs, Jackson was third with 629 receiving yards and second with an average of 25.2 yards per catch among players targeted at least 10 times. Jackson's four touchdowns on first downs were tied for ninth in the league. These numbers are more impressive since Jackson wasn't in the top 15 of times targeted or receptions on first downs.
Here is the rest of the ESPN top 10 list: 1. Houston's Andre Johnson; 2. Arizona's Larry Fitzgerald; 3. Atlanta's Roddy White; 4. Detroit's Calvin Johnson; 5. Indianapolis' Reggie Wayne; 6. Green Bay's Greg Jennings; 7. Kansas City's Dwayne Bowe; 9. Denver's Brandon Lloyd and 10. Miami's Brandon Marshall.
-- Posted by Chris McPherson, 12:00 p.m., March 9