DeSean Jackson appeared on Friday night's SportsCenter in a sit down interview with Stephen A. Smith that clarified a few questions but left us wondering more.
I don't think Smith did a particularly good job with DeSean, but he did get him to admit that he knows gang members and the response given when asked if he hangs out with them was perhaps the biggest nugget to come out of the whole thing:
Asked if he hangs out with gang members, Jackson said, "Not if they're doing negative things." He added that gangs were products of the environment in which he grew up and that he witnessed "things" on a daily basis.
"Do I know people who are involved? Yes," he said. "I'm definitely aware of and know certain gang members.
"But as far as being affiliated, never have been in one. I've always felt I've been a product of my environment, but I've always felt I've wanted to do things the right way."
Then they got into a discussion on the semantics of gang signs, which didn't appear to make a whole lot of sense to me. Jackson admitted he uses some sort of signage on occasion but again denied it was gang related, instead saying it was something he and people he grew up with do to relate to their roots; more of a cultural thing.
I don't think this interview really changed much of the perception of DeSean but it does clarify that he knew gang members and probably hung out with them in the past -- from the sounds of it, probably pretty recently too.
As for the Eagles? They didn't even give DeSean a legit reason for his release? Jackson made it seem like all Chip Kelly told him over the phone was that they'd chosen to go in a new direction. DeSean said his relationship with Chip was good but that Andy Reid was something of a father figure.
I don't think DeSean Jackson is a bad person underneath it all, but he did admit to being late to meetings and missing at least one during his time with the Eagles. Not exactly a fire-able offense. He hasn't always surrounded himself with the best people. At least we know he admitted to that now.
This interview didn't make me feel more one way or the other about the bizarre situation. How about you?