It is 2008, the 2nd round of the NFL draft where the Philadelphia Eagles announced they have selected wide-receiver/return specialist DeSean Jackson out of the University of California.
And then the newly drafted DeSean Jackson received a phone call from then (now Kansas City Chiefs) head coach Andy Reid, a call every player should be excited about, but in this case, not so much. In the new documentary focusing on the football life of DeSean Jackson, will share conversations of friends and family members, after that call from Andy Reid ended.
“Hey, I just want to say one thing. I was on the phone with Andy Reid. He said, ‘I don’t want your family to be a problem. I don’t want to deal with your Dad.’ He said some bad things. I just wanted to let you know. That’s kind of messed up, though.” - DeSean Jackson to PhillyMag.com
His Father, being Bill Jackson, was heavily involved with his son DeSean’s football career. DeSean’s coach at the University of California, shared some things about Bill Jackson which made it’s way to Andy Reid during the pre-draft process, which lead to that uncomfortable phone call after Jackson was drafted.
“I never gave him time off. People used to say, ‘Why are you doing him like that. You’re trying to kill him.’ Because he had so much energy, he would be running the streets.” - Bill Jackson says in the upcoming documentary.
It is almost normal for parents to get heavily involved in their sons football activities, usually from the time they start in junior tackle or pop-warner football, through out high school/college if they go that far. Many Fathers across the country, even globe who get involved in practices or games, expect their child to perform to the best of their ability. They want their child to be the best at what they do, some take the ‘do the best you can, either way you are a winner’ approach, others set goals and expect their child to reach them.
“While I understood what Bill’s motives were, he didn’t always go about it the right way. As far as alienating people or really being loud outside of the locker room and things like that. If DeSean only caught a couple of balls in the game, he wanted him to catch 10. He was driven for DeSean to be successful.” – Jeff Tedford, Jackson’s coach at the University of California
So based on that reputation, it only made sense for Andy Reid to let Jackson know from the start, what would and wouldn’t fly now that he is a professional football player in the National Football League.
DeSean Jackson’s Father Bill, watched from a hospital bed as the Philadelphia Eagles defeated the New York Giants in the Divisional Round to advance to the NFC Championship game in DeSean’s rookie season. Jackson had 4 receptions for 81 yards in that game. Earlier that day, Bill Jackson was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, that was January 11th, 2009. Bill Jackson later passed away that same year, on May 14th.
The next season DeSean hit the ground running, posting over 1,100 receiving yards and 12 total touchdowns. He and his brother Byron, were awaiting to get word on if he would be selected to the Pro Bowl or not. DeSean’s phone rang and of course, it was his head coach at the time, Andy Reid confirming he was a pro bowl selection. Jackson rushed down his steps and into his brother’s arms, where Jackson turns to the camera and says.
“Pops man, I love you. You knew.”
DeSean Jackson led the NFC with 101 yards and two touchdowns on that Pro Bowl game, which would have been played on his Father’s 65th birthday.
The documentary titled ‘DeSean Jackson, The Making Of A Father’s Dream’ will be released around Father’s Day, OnDemand beginning June 7th, 2013.