Updated: March 25, 2014, 1:22 PM ET
ESPN.com news services
Michael Vick offered his “utmost support” for DeSean Jackson during an ESPN Radio interview Tuesday, saying that his former teammate has to “embrace” a potential trade from the Philadelphia Eagles.
Jackson has been the subject of numerous trade rumors amid widespread speculation about the wide receiver’s future with the Eagles.
Vick, who signed with the New York Jets on Friday after spending the past five seasons with Philadelphia, spoke about Jackson’s possible departure from the Eagles with ESPN Radio’s “Mike & Mike” on Tuesday morning.
“If it does happen for DeSean, it’s something that he has to embrace, something he may have to learn from, depending on whether he wants to leave or not,” Vick said. “Regardless, I’m going to support him. He’s always been a great friend of mine and a great football player. And I think highly of him. I give him my utmost support.”
Vick also spoke about the dynamic between Jackson and Eagles coach Chip Kelly, who reportedly has grown tired of dealing with the three-time Pro Bowl receiver.
“Chip Kelly is a leader,” Vick said. “You have to understand Chip Kelly to know what type of person he is and be around him. He’s not a bad person by any stretch. But certain organizations want things done a certain way.”
The Eagles have remained silent on Jackson, who signed a five-year contract extension two years ago, since reports surfaced they were willing to trade him.
“[Jackson] is a very productive player,” Vick said. “Everybody has a lot of respect for him. But I think at the end of the day, Chip Kelly’s decision — the way he wants to do it — is his decision. Who knows why internally.”
Jackson said after the season that he thought he deserved a raise, although he later tried to clarify on his Instagram page that he wasn’t demanding a new contract.
He indicated Monday night on his Instagram page that he spoke with Kelly and posted a photo of the coach, referring to him as a “winner.”
Good to Talk to BIg Chip today !! Say or hear what ya want !! The Picture speaks for itself !! Winner… http://t.co/LHYQLmPoHo
– Desean Jackson (@DeseanJackson10) March 25, 2014
The Eagles have paid Jackson $18 million the past two seasons. He’s due to make $10.5 million in 2014 and is owed $30.5 million over the remainder of his deal, but none of that money is guaranteed.
Jackson, 27, set career bests in receptions (82) and yards (1,332) and tied his career high with nine touchdowns last season, Kelly’s first with the Eagles.
“I know DeSean’s very dynamic and the entire league loves what he brings to the table,” Vick said. “But maybe we see something that Chip doesn’t see.”
Eagles general manager Howie Roseman was asked Monday at the NFL’s owners meetings about the trade rumors, but he had little to say.
“He’s still under contract for us and until there’s anything to report on our players, that’s where we are now,” he told reporters.
The owner of Vick’s new team, however, made it clear Sunday that the Jets are interested in Jackson as well as a “number of players.”
“We’re looking at a number of players, including DeSean,” Woody Johnson said. “He’s a very good player. We’re looking at a number of them. Trade’s not our primary operating motif right now. We’re trying to build through the draft. Building through the draft is something that is the way to build a successful team long-term.”