Philadelphia Eagles News

Jackson Says He'll Handle Punt Return Duties

DeSean Jackson's NFL career got off to an amazing start last year. In his debut against the Rams, Jackson caught six passes for 106 yards including a beautiful 47-yard grab down the sideline. One week later, in Dallas, Jackson had six catches for 110 yards and should have had a touchdown - we all know what happened there.

Now that Jackson is a clear-cut starter for the Eagles, what does he plan for an encore? To Jackson's credit, he's not providing bulletin board material. There are no guarantees of 100 catches or 1,000 yards. In fact, with all of the weapons that the Eagles have, Jackson doesn't think he'll need to be any more special than he was last season.

"The personnel we have on this offense, I don't think I have to be doing too much," Jackson said. "We have a lot of players out here who are great just like myself. I just want to go out there and be productive any way possible."

One area where Jackson will be able to produce is on punt returns, according to Jackson. The Eagles used their first-round pick on Jeremy Maclin, who was a dynamic returner in college. With Jackson's role on offense increasing, it looked like Maclin would shoulder the punt return duties. However, Jackson said on Wednesday that it's his job. Maclin separately confirmed that he's No. 2 on the depth chart at punt returner.

"It's just been something that I've been doing for a long time," said Jackson, who had three returns of 60 yards-or-more last year including the playoffs. "I didn't think anything was going to change. They wanted to see Jeremy (in the preseason) and see what he had. We'll see how it works."

We also have to wait and see how the distribution on offense is going to work out. The Eagles have seven talented receivers, although not all will likely be active on gameday. There are also two pass-catching threats at tight end with Brent Celek and the newly acquired Alex Smith. Don't forget Brian Westbrook and LeSean McCoy out of the backfield as well. Is there a concern that there aren't enough balls to go around?

"Hopefully that's not the case. There's nothing I can do to control that," Jackson said. "Just be in the right place at the right time and have the confidence that everybody is going to take care of what they need to take care of."

-- Posted by Chris McPherson, 2:54 p.m., September 9

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