DeSean Jackson mulling retirement: ‘I’m not really sure if I’m going to play next year or not’

Following 14 seasons in the NFL, one of the league’s fastest players might be coming to the finish line.

Three-time Pro Bowl wide receiver DeSean Jackson, one of the best deep threats of all time, is leaning toward retirement unless the “right fit” presents itself.

“I’m not really sure if I’m going to play next year or not,” Jackson said in an interview with Sports Illustrated’s Ashley Nicole Moss. “I know I announced and said I was going to be play. It’s just really at this point where I’m at in my life, it’s gotta be the right fit.

“My career’s been one helluva ride.”

That ride most recently took him to Las Vegas, where he played seven games with the Raiders in 2021 after beginning the season with the Los Angeles Rams.

Jackson and the eventual Super Bowl-champion Rams weren’t the right fit, which led to Jackson wanting and receiving his release. He landed with the Raiders, who were the fifth team of his NFL career, joining the Philadelphia Eagles (twice), Washington and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Jackson posted 20 catches for 454 yards (22.7 yards per catch) and two touchdowns combined with the Rams and Raiders, so he still has the legs to be a game-breaker.

A big-play demon who’s had a catch of 40-plus yards in every one of his seasons and a catch of more than 50 in all but one, Jackson has averaged 17.6 yards per catch over his career, with 632 receptions for 11,110 yards and 58 touchdowns. He’s led the NFL in yard per catch in four seasons and posted 1,000 yards receiving in five seasons.

“I’ve already surpassed every level I ever thought I accomplished,” Jackson said.

If it is a career for Jackson, it’s been an exciting one. It began with the Eagles taking him in the second round of the 2008 NFL Draft after decorated days at Long Beach Poly in high school and Cal in college. Jackson made an instant impact in the Eagles’ starting lineup as a receiver who was also a weapon running the ball and as one of the NFL’s top return men. After six seasons in Philly, Jackson moved on to Washington and then eventually Tampa Bay, where ultimately his best days concluded as injuries have plagued him since. Still, he’s always been a threat for at least one game-changing play per contest, which he showed as recently as last season when he hauled in a 56-yard touchdown for the Raiders in an upset win over the Dallas Cowboys.

As for what the right situation would be to bring him back for Year No. 15, Jackson said it would need to include a “great quarterback,” before listing some of his top destinations.

“Chiefs may be one,” said Jackson, who was drafted and played for current Kansas City head coach Andy Reid with the Eagles. “The Browns. Russell Wilson in Denver. Green Bay. You on the right track, so we’ll see for sure.”

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