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DeSean Jackson 2021 Rams sign speedy veteran WR for LA homecoming

DeSean Jackson 2021 Rams sign speedy veteran WR  for LA homecoming

DeSean Jackson 2021 Rams sign speedy veteran WR for LA homecoming

DeSean Jackson DeSean Jackson for Rams homecoming LA sign veteran WR speedy

Mon, 22 Mar 2021 00:00:00 -0700

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Veteran receiver DeSean Jackson agreed to a one-year deal with the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday, returning to his native Southern 

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by: GREG BEACHAM, Associated Press

FILE – In this Sunday, Dec.

27.

2020 file photo, Philadelphia Eagles’ DeSean Jackson (10) catches a long pass and gets past Dallas Cowboys cornerback Chidobe Awuzie (24) on his way to the end zone for a touchdown in the first half of an NFL football game in Arlington, Texas.

Veteran receiver DeSean Jackson has signed with the Los Angeles Rams, returning to his native Southern California after 13 NFL seasons on the East Coast.

The Rams announced the deal for Jackson on Sunday, March 21, 2021 adding him to the targets for new quarterback Matthew Stafford.(AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth, File)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Veteran receiver DeSean Jackson agreed to a one-year deal with the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday, returning to his native Southern California after 13 NFL seasons on the East Coast.

Jackson will provide a deep threat for new quarterback Matthew Stafford.

The deal also reunites Jackson with Sean McVay, his offensive coordinator for three seasons in Washington.

The 34-year-old Jackson spent his first six NFL seasons and the last two with the Philadelphia Eagles, but he played in just eight games over the last two years due to injuries.

The speedy wideout had the best season of his career in 2013 with 82 catches for 1,332 yards and nine touchdowns for the Eagles, and he followed it with two 1,000-yard seasons for Washington under McVay’s leadership.

Jackson then spent two seasons with Tampa Bay before rejoining Philadelphia in 2019.

Jackson has spoken in past offseasons about his interest in reuniting with McVay and in playing back home in California.

The Rams were in the market for a speedy deep threat to add contrast to McVay’s short-pass offense, and Jackson appeared to be an ideal fit even before the Rams got the deal done.

When McVay was asked Friday about the possibility of signing another receiver, the coach smiled and replied: “We’re always trying to add some juice.”

Jackson was born in Los Angeles and grew up in the Crenshaw district.

After a standout career at prep powerhouse Long Beach Poly, he spurned USC’s interest and moved north to play three collegiate seasons at California.

Jackson will join fellow Los Angeles-area native Robert Woods and Cooper Kupp as the Rams’ top receivers.

Josh Reynolds, the Rams’ No.

3 receiver last season, is an unsigned free agent, while Van Jefferson is expected to get much more playing time in 2021 after being used sparingly as a rookie.

Woods, Kupp and Jefferson are all excellent receivers, but all three play a game based on precision, not overwhelming speed.

Jackson has led the NFL in yards per reception four times in his career — and if he’s healthy, he could fit the Rams’ needs perfectly.

McVay had Sammy Watkins as a deep threat in 2017, and he was followed by Brandin Cooks in 2018 and 2019.

Los Angeles traded Cooks early last year and didn’t replace his speed.

“When you definitely have skill players with juice, that can threaten the top shelf of the (opponents’) coverage,” general manager Les Snead said Friday when asked about the importance of signing a deep threat.

“The difficult part of the equation is finding those players who can actually threaten NFL defenders, because most players that come into this league are fast,” Snead added.

“So there is an element where you have to really go search and identify.

We’d all love to identify those guys that can even threaten NFL defenders.”

___

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DeSean Jackson DeSean Jackson

Mon, 22 Mar 2021 00:00:00 -0700

The Rams are bringing in some veteran receiving help for new quarterback Matthew Stafford, signing former Long Beach Poly standout DeSean Jackson

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Two days after the Rams introduced Matthew Stafford, they gave their new quarterback a new weapon.

The Rams announced Sunday that they had agreed to terms with veteran wide receiver DeSean Jackson, providing coach Sean McVay and the offense with a potential deep threat that was sorely lacking in 2020.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed but it is a one-year contract, a person with knowledge of the situation said.

Jackson, 34, has 56 touchdown catches and has averaged 17.4 yards per catch during a 13-year NFL career that began with the Philadelphia Eagles and has also included stints with Washington — where McVay was offensive coordinator — and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers before he rejoined the Eagles for two injury hampered seasons.

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Jackson played in only five games last season because of hamstring and ankle injuries.

He caught 14 passes for 236 yards and a touchdown.

It will be a homecoming for Jackson, a three-time Pro Bowl selection who played at Long Beach Poly High and California before the Eagles selected him in the second round of the 2008 NFL draft.
In 2013, Jackson caught a career-best 82 passes for 1,332 yards and nine touchdowns for the Eagles.

Over the next three seasons in Washington with McVay, he caught 14 touchdown passes.

In 2014, he caught 56 passes and averaged 20.9 yards per reception.

The next season, he caught 30 passes and averaged 17.6 yards per catch.

In 2016, he caught 56 passes and averaged 17.9 yards per catch.

Jackson joins a receiver corps that includes Robert Woods, Cooper Kupp and second-year pro Van Jefferson.

A post shared by Desean Jackson (@0ne0fone)

In McVay’s first season with the Rams in 2017, the offense flourished with Sammy Watkins as a deep threat.

Brandin Cooks filled that role in 2018, when the Rams advanced to the Super Bowl, before suffering multiple concussions in 2019.

Last season, the Rams’ longest touchdown pass play covered 56 yards, and McVay rarely gave former quarterback Jared Goff the opportunity to throw deep routes.

Since the end of the season, which concluded with a loss to the Green Bay Packers in an NFC divisional-round playoff game, McVay acknowledged that the Rams needed to create more “explosives” to prevent having to rely upon lengthy drives.

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Last week, general manager Les Snead also acknowledged the need for speedy “skill players with juice” to force defensive coordinators to commit safeties to pass coverage.

“The difficult part of the equation is finding those players who can actually threaten NFL defenders, because most players that come into this league are fast,” Snead said.

“So, there is an element where you have to really go search and identify.”

McVay said it requires more than a deep threat.

As the play-caller, he must put that in play.

“When you talk about opportunities, you have to call plays that give you an opportunity to be explosive, and that’s where my contribution is,” he said.

“Anytime that you have guys that can do that, that definitely is a benefit.”

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Gary Klein covers the Los Angeles Rams for the Los Angeles Times.

Before that, he covered USC’s football program and athletic department.

He began working for The Times in the San Fernando Valley edition and has reported on high school, college and pro sports.

He grew up in Southern California and graduated from Cal State Northridge.

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