Jackson adds to Eagles' WR issues

January, 6, 2014
Jan 6
3:10
PM ET
PHILADELPHIA -- Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson may have picked a bad time to make a public request for a new contract.

Jackson has three years left on his current deal, but that's not the only reason his timing might be bad. Eagles general manager Howie Roseman and coach Chip Kelly already have a complicated roster puzzle at the wide receiver position.

Jeremy Maclin, who missed the entire season after tearing his ACL in training camp, will be an unrestricted free agent. Do the Eagles offer him a long-term deal before seeing if he's able to regain his prior form? Will another team take a shot on the former first-round pick?

Riley Cooper, who started all 16 games in place of Maclin, is also an unrestricted free agent. Do the Eagles pay him like a No. 2 receiver behind Jackson? Will someone else jump in and offer him more money? How will the offseason incident in which he was caught on video using a racial slur affect Cooper's market value?

Arrelious Benn, who also tore an ACL, has one more year left on his contract. Does he fit into the Eagles' plans at all?

Veteran Jason Avant will be 31 this year. He has one more year left on his deal. If the Eagles bring back Cooper and Maclin, is there room for Avant at $3.25 million, including a $1 million roster bonus?

Even before Jackson raised his hand, there were plenty of issues for Kelly and Roseman to address.

Maclin said he is running and expects to be available for spring activities, wherever he is employed.

"I'm just going to take it as it comes," Maclin said. "I know a lot things are going to happen here in the next couple months for myself, for this organization. I'm pretty sure everything's going to work itself out."

Maclin said he and the Eagles had "some discussions earlier on" about his future. The injury could force him to accept a one-year deal to prove he is fully recovered.

"I'm a realist, so I understand that's a possibility," Maclin said. "Me and my agent, we'll get together and discuss what's best for me and then go from there."

Cooper said he had no idea what to expect from his first brush with free agency.

"I want to be back," Cooper said. "I'm hoping the Eagles come into play and I'm here. It's a first for me. I don't know what it's like. I know I'm not on a team. I want to be here. It's such a great group of guys."

Avant completed his eighth season, which makes him one of the longest-tenured Eagles.

"This is a business as well," Avant said. "There are contract issues. There are so many moving parts. You want everyone to come back, but it's just not the truth. That's just the National Football League. To Eagles fans: I've had a ball here, no matter what the outcome is."

Phil Sheridan

ESPN Philadelphia Eagles reporter

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