As of this writing, Jackson has not made himself available for comment, leaving many concerned members of the media searching for answers. However, if he happened to Tweet about what was happening in his world this week (he didn't), it might sound something like this:
sry @ OTAS.. on da way home frm ATL yea buddy.. not talkn contract tho!! agent handln that.. get ready big yr frm #10 AND YA DO KNO THAT
So there you have it. Nothing to worry about. Right?
I know the reports say the absence isn't contract related. My guess is that's only a half-truth. DeSean has shown no intention of holding out, and doesn't seem overly concerned about any specific timetable. He's been incredibly mature about a situation that's really beyond the Eagles' control.
Due to current CBA rules, players on their rookie contracts are ineligible for raises to their base pay that exceed 30%. DeSean will only earn $470k in 2010 and $555k in 2011. Therefore, the only way it appears the Eagles can give him an extension would be to pay it almost entirely in guaranteed bonus money, which places all of the risk on the team.
That being said, how much sense does it make for a player to attend a voluntary practice in the midst of negotiating a complicated new deal? The team prefers full participation, but there is no reason for DeSean to risk sustaining a serious injury when he wasn't required to be on the field in the first place. That would complicate matters, to say the least.
So while it's probably not a contract related absence in the sense that he skipped minicamp out of frustration with the front office, it's reasonable to conclude the player simply finds it in his best interest to stay away. In this case, he's 100% right.
However you choose to interpret it, there's no reason to overreact. Best case scenario, Jackson would be working with Kolb every opportunity they had. It's June though. There will be plenty of time over the summer to get in sync. DeSean is a superstar now, and he's got to look out for himself until then.
(Original image by Scott Boehm / Getty Images)