Shortly after DeSean Jackson was released by Philaldephia last month, Trent Williams reached for his cellphone and sent the former Eagles wide receiver a text message.
“I just asked him if [the Redskins] were even in the picture,” Williams said. “When he told me that they were talking, I just told him basically that we would love have a player of his caliber, and that our team would be willing to embrace him and try to do big things.”
Williams, a team captain, made his comments on a conference call with reporters on Monday, the first day of voluntary offseason workouts at Redskins Park.
Jackson was not among the players in attendance, but it was because he had a previously scheduled vacation. Jackson booked the trip when he believed he would be playing for the Eagles, CSNWashington.com was told. The Eagles do not begin offseason training until April 21. Jackson is expected to join the Redskins upon returning next week.
Williams, who exchanged phone numbers with Jackson at the Pro Bowl in January, said he doesn’t believe that Jackson will become a distraction once he arrives in Ashburn, despite the reputation he forged in Philly.
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“A lot of the stuff is just he say, she say stuff, and you got to get to know a guy for yourself,” Williams said. “I haven’t had any type of bad feelings towards him, or any type of bad read. When I met him he was a great guy, a pretty cool guy.”
Williams added: “I don’t think he’s a bad guy. I don’t think his character is bad. I think he can be a great addition to this team.”
His defense of Jackson didn’t stop there – and he used Jackson’s production on the field to support his case.
“In my opinion, we play a game that’s America’s game and there’s a lot of eyes on you,” Williams said. “A lot of people just want to pick you apart. No matter what you do, they are going to find the wrong in what you do and forget about the good things.”
“To be honest with you, for a guy that has had the type of impact he has had, three Pro Bowls and just countless numbers of big plays and putting his team in position to win, to me, I wouldn’t question his practice habits,” Williams continued. “He’s proven himself day in and day out. …I’m not going to judge him, or say that he needs to change which way or another. I can only go on his body of work. And his body work, his numbers, they can stand up there with the top receivers in the league.”