General manager Howie Roseman would certainly have a future in the CIA some day if he wanted to.
Just when it appeared as if wide receiver DeSean Jackson would sign his one-year franchise tender, the Eagles announced on Wednesday evening around 5 P.M. that they had agreed to a new five-year contract. Roseman nor Jackson's representatives gave any hint that a long-term deal was not just in the works, but near completion. Roseman said on Thursday after Jackson officially signed the contract that both sides worked hard to get this deal done.
"We had hoped that we would get this done fairly quickly ... I think the urgency on all sides was there to get it done quickly," Roseman said. "We like to do things under the radar sometimes."
Roseman takes great pride in being able to keep homegrown players in Philadelphia such as Jackson, a second-round pick of the Eagles in 2008. In four seasons, Jackson has 229 catches for 4,085 yards and 27 touchdowns (21 receiving, four punt return and three rushing). Jackson also has 16 catches in the postseason for 268 yards and two touchdowns.
The two-time Pro Bowl receiver did not crack the 1,000-yard receiving mark for the first time in three years in 2011, but still became the first player in NFL history to record 3,500 receiving yards and 1,000 punt return yards in the first four years of a career. Since entering the league, Jackson is second in the league among receivers who have at least 200 catches with an average of 17.8 yards per catch. Twenty-two of Jackson's 30 career touchdowns (including playoffs) spanned 30 yards or more.
"We have high expectations for DeSean Jackson," Roseman said. "We always have. We think he's a great player. That's why we gave him this contract and we expect to see that this year."
Jackson's deal continued a frenetic week for Roseman as the Eagles also extended the contracts of offensive tackle Todd Herremans and defensive end Trent Cole. Roseman explained that the Eagles wanted to "reconfirm our belief in our players" with these long-term deals.
Last year, of course, the Eagles hauled in a lot of outside talent in free agency. This year, the Eagles have been patient when it comes to other team's players. Roseman explains that it's not a philosophical shift more so than timing and the fact that this is a traditional offseason instead of the fast-paced bonanza coming out of the lockout last year.
"I think it just worked out that the expirations on some of these contracts were coming up and these are good players on our team and we wanted to address those guys," Roseman said.
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