The NFL Player’s Association has been investigating the circumstances surrounding the Eagles’ release of DeSean Jackson. Not surprisingly, the NFL thinks that the union should move along, there’s nothing to see here.
“I think we are comfortable that the decisions that were made on both ends were football decisions,” NFL senior vice president of law and labor policy Adolpho Birch said via Philly.com. “Both sides, the objective that they sought from a football perspective, they got, whether that be the Eagles or the Redskins. I think the player’s going to be in a good position. I think at the end of the day, everyone was comfortable with that.”
That’s all well and good and $10.5 million that Jackson was due in salary can certainly be called justification for the decision to let him go despite his Pro Bowl performance in 2013. But that’s not really what the NFLPA’s inveistgation is concerned with.
“On the issue of how he was released, whether or not there were comments or leaks from the team, misinformation to the media coming from the team, that’s something that we’re going to look at,” said NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith on Mike and Mike earlier this month. “We’ve always been aggressive about protecting the integrity of our players.”
The union’s concerns are items like an NJ.com article discussing possible gang ties by Jackson that came out shortly before the player’s release. An anonymous Eagles official was quoted in the article talking about Jackson having a bad influence on younger players.
The article could have depressed Jackson’s market value. Although he did end up signing a nice three-year, $24 million deal with the Redskins, there didn’t not seem to be much bidding for the services of a 27-year-old receiver coming off of a career year.
Birch did not address that; all the did was state something that isn’t really the issue.