The Tampa Bay Buccaneers struggled once again in 2018, and the relationship between DeSean Jackson and Jameis Winston didn’t help.
It doesn’t sound like DeSean Jackson and Jameis Winston will be going to dinner together anytime soon.
According to a source with knowledge of the situation, Jackson and Winston were at odds for much of the 2018 season. Jackson, 32, struggled to work well with the embattled quarterback, something that could expedite his departure from the Buccaneers this offseason. Tampa Bay has tough decisions to make, approximately looking at $17.51 million of cap space this spring.
After signing a three-year, $33.5 million deal, Jackson has struggled to replicate his previous successes with the Philadelphia Eagles and Washington Redskins. In two years with Tampa Bay, Jackson has totaled 1,442 yards and seven touchdowns despite maintaining his trademark speed.
However, Jackson was off to a terrific beginning to 2018 with Ryan Fitzpatrick during Winston’s suspension. In Fitzpatrick’s four starts, Jackson notched 424 yards and three touchdowns, including a trio of 100-yard efforts. Over the final 12 games — 10 with Winston — Jackson amassed 350 yards and one score.
Going forward, the understanding is that Jackson is unwilling to take a pay cut to remain with the Buccaneers. Jackson is due $10 million, all of which would be saved by Tampa Bay if he’s released. The expectation is that Jackson could get close to that rate on the open market, but the contract would include guaranteed money over multiple seasons.
If Jackson is released, he’ll have a market. The thought is that Jackson would be looking for the right situation that includes a quality quarterback and a competitive team.