DeSean Jackson Reaches Out to Rabbi After Eagles Hint at Punishment

DeSean Jackson Eagles Injury Update

Getty DeSean Jackson of the Philadelphia Eagles

The Eagles are reviewing DeSean Jackson’s anti-Semitic post and the organization said they will take “appropriate action” in a statement. This sensitive matter is far from over.

Jackson came under fire late Monday evening when he shared false quotes attributed to Adolf Hitler in an Instagram story. He issued an emotional video apology on Tuesday but not before the comments went viral and started a heated debate around the league. Jackson admitted it was a mistake to post it while stating he didn’t harbor hatred towards anyone, especially not against the Jewish community.

“I post a lot of things that are sent to me. I do not have hatred towards anyone,” Jackson wrote on Instagram. “I really didn’t realize what this passage was saying. Hitler has caused terrible pain to Jewish people like the pain African-Americans have suffered. We should be together fighting anti-Semitism and racism. This was a mistake to post this and I truly apologize for posting it and sorry for any hurt I have caused.”

The 33-year-old has emerged as a team leader during his second tour of duty with the Eagles, one who was widely praised for educating his white teammates on why the black community was rallying against social injustice. Jackson has also been charged with mentoring the younger players, especially rookie Jalen Reagor.

On Tuesday night, Jackson offered a second apology after his video one was criticized for not being sincere. He sent a personal apology to Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie and GM Howie Roseman (the two men are both Jewish) while calling his initial posts “insensitive” and “ill-informed.” He also promised to work with local organizations to better educate himself and make a difference in the community. Jackson reached out to Rabbi Doniel Grodnitzky of Chabad Young Philly, per NBC10’s John Clark, to help with his sensitivity training.

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Eagles Warn of ‘Appropriate Action’ & Future Discipline

The Eagles were quick to put out a statement condemning the contents of Jackson’s original message, one that said “the Jews will blackmail America” and that “Negroes are the real Children of Israel.” In it, the organization said they were “disappointed” in Jackson and hinted at possible discipline.

“We have spoken with DeSean Jackson about his social media posts. Regardless of his intentions, the messages he shared were offensive, harmful, and absolutely appalling,” the Eagles wrote. “They have no place in our society and are not condoned or supported in any way by the organization. We are continuing to evaluate the circumstances and will take appropriate action.”

Jackson has maintained that the post was interpreted in the “wrong way” and offered that everyone should work together to fight both anti-Semitism and racism. The fact the Eagles used the words “appropriate action” certainly left the door open for a suspension, fine or maybe even a flat-out release of their top speed threat. As ESPN’s Adam Schefter pointed out, the latter may come down to the Eagles getting out of the $4.8 million in guaranteed salary that Jackson is owed for the 2020 season.


NFL Puts Out Strong Statement on Jackson’s Comments

Meanwhile, the NFL found it necessary to put out their own statement regarding Jackson’s insensitive Instagram post steeped in an anti-Semitic commentary. The commissioner’s office has been in touch with the Eagles to discuss the matter.

Per NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero: “DeSean’s comments were highly inappropriate, offensive and divisive and stand in stark contrast to the NFL’s values of respect, equality and inclusion. We have been in contact with the team which is addressing the matter with DeSean.”

It’s important to note that the league office cannot force the Eagles to punish Jackson since it’s a club issue. The most obvious parallel is to Riley Cooper’s use of a racial slur in 2013. Philadelphia chose not to release Cooper at the time but did make him take a short leave of absence from the team and fined him an undisclosed amount of money. Jackson may be faced with similar punishment, although an outright dismissal hasn’t been ruled out.

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