Jackson is an extremely talented player (with blazing speed) and many teams could benefit from bringing him in as a #1 wide receiver and return specialist. He’s likely to be released, not many teams have the cap space to absorb his 10.5 million salary.
The Panthers lost their top four WR’s (Steve Smith, Brandon LaFell, Ted Ginn and Domenik Hixon) from last season when they all bolted during the first week of free agency. They missed out on James Jones when he signed with the Oakland Raiders. Carolina responded by signing Jerricho Cotchery, but he’s a 3rd WR, maybe a #2 at best. He might be a professional and a great character signing, but he isn’t the answer for a team that had a very good season and needs to surround quarterback Cam Newton with talent at the skill positions.
Jackson would provide the Panthers and Newton with a homerun threat and a nice return specialist. The Panthers need to try and make the fans forget about losing their best WR’s.
2-New York Jets.
The Jets are intriguing because of the signing of Michael Vick. Vick and Jackson played together in Philadelphia and NY needs a playmaker. Sure, they signed Eric Decker to a 5 year deal worth 36 million, but a lot of people think he’s best suited to being a #2. For all his trouble, Jackson is a clear #1 WR and he’d give the Jets the best WR they have had in a while.
His familiarity with Vick and NY offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg makes this a no-brainer in my opinion.
The Raiders signed former Packer Jones but Oakland is in a win now mentality. General manager Reggie McKenzie has been busy in free agency, signing veteran players (Justin Tuck, Lamarr Woodley, Antonio Smith, Donald Penn, Jones) that can come in and help them win right away.
Jackson would give them a a very good #1 and Jones would give them a solid #2 option. With Denaruis Moore in the slot. Rod Streater and Andre Holmes give them big physical WR’s off the bench (Schaub had this in Houston with Andre Johnson), they would have some nice depth at the position.
The Rams compete in the stacked NFC West and they need a playmaker for QB Sam Bradford who hasn’t exactly been surrounded by talent at the WR position since he has been with St. Louis. The Rams draft picks at WR haven’t exactly panned out: Austin Pettis (95 receptions in 3 seasons), Greg Salas (six receptions in one season). Bradford needs help if they are to compete in the West. Tavon Austin is a nice player but he’s better suited to being a slot WR and not a #1 or #2.
Bottom line, STL needs a player like Jackson to take the next step and be a serious threat in the West.
Jackson will find a home and these teams are the best destination for him.
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