Jackson shows baseball skills with basket catch
Maybe the Washington Nationals didn’t have to go to Chicago to find their new outfielder. Washington Redskins coach Jay Gruden joked after DeSean Jackson’s Willie Mays-like over-the-shoulder basket catch in Sunday’s 27-22 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles that his wide receiver might have chosen the wrong sport.
“DeSean would’ve been a world-class center fielder,” a happy Gruden said. “He adjusts to the ball like no other. You just put it up in the air where he can see it and find it and he’ll get it.”
Down 13-7 in the third quarter, Jackson got behind the Eagles’ secondary and had to twist his body to find the rainbow Kirk Cousins had put on his outside shoulder. After hauling in the pass. Jackson shed cornerback Leodis McKelvin and casually strolled into the end zone.
The former Eagle, who finished with three receptions for 102 yards in his return to Philadelphia, said he and Cousins noticed a fault in the Eagles’ coverage and knew that they could exploit it with a big play.
“We actually talked about that in the locker room at half time,” Jackson said. “We knew that we was going to get that coverage. That play was huge.”
The catch was one for the record books as well: Jackson has 22 touchdown receptions of at least 60 yards — moving him out of a tie into second place in league history — just one fewer than Hall of Famer Jerry Rice.
Jackson wasn’t surprised by Gruden’s comments about playing the outfield
“I definitely was a good baseball player,” Jackson said. “Time to time, I always think about maybe one day going back.” Don’t count on it. Jackson loves football. “The love of the game for football tremendously outweighs my love of baseball,” Jackson said. “I used to grow up playing in the front yard, tackling my boys. I just love the physical nature of the game.”
Washington Redskins receiver DeSean Jackson made an over-the-shoulder basket catch for a 80-yard touchdown reception on Sunday.