LeSean McCoy says he never saw DeSean Jackson curse at Chip Kelly, and McCoy indicated that there is no reason for Eagles players to be happy Jackson is gone to the Washington Redskins, after having been released by the Eagles.
Some players have seemed diffident about the move. A CBS-3 story quoted anonymous current and former Eagles saying Jackson was selfish and divisive, indicating they felt the team was better off without him.
McCoy, speaking at the conclusion of a Saturday morning youth clinic at Camden Catholic High, said: "It's a surprise for sure. Anybody that tells you they're happy about it, I don't know how honest that would be. It is a surprise. You've heard so much, you don't really know (what's true). Not playing with him is definitely going to be different. Playing against him is REALLY going to be different ... It's some big shoes to fill. DeSean's by far one of the biggest playmakers in the game, and the biggest deep threat there is in the game. Some big shoes to fill, for sure.
"Then again, the front office, they obviously know what they're doing. You make a move like that, you obviously have something up your sleeve, where you know you can get something that's similar or even better."
Why does McCoy think the Eagles released a healthy, 27-year-old, three-time Pro Bowl receiver coming off a career year of 82 catches for 1,332 yards?
"I'm not sure," he said. "I can't answer that. I'm just a regular player, I don't know why."
Asked about the CBS-3 story that alleged Jackson had repeated conflicts with Kelly and cursed the coach out in front of the team, McCoy said: "I've never seen that. I've never seen the two of them get into it. Coach Kelly, the good thing I'll say about him is, he's understanding. If you have an issue or a problem, he seems to always work it out."
McCoy rejected an assertion that Jackson didn't hang out with or get along with teammates.
"I'm his teammate, or I was his teammate, and we connected very well," McCoy said. "In this game, man, everybody's professionals, and there's guys that have kids; DeSean doesn't have any kids ... off the field, I bonded really well with DeSean."
Asked what Kelly's offense will be like without Jackson, McCoy said: "I wish I knew. Like I said, I'm sure Howie (Roseman) and the guys have something up their sleeve. You make a move like that, they obviously know something. I have my trust in them. The team they've put together so far, bringing in (Darren) Sproles, making different moves, signing guys, they know what they're doing. I just think, losing DeSean, there's definitely some big shoes to fill."
McCoy said he has spoken with Jackson since the Eagles cut ties.
"Any player would be hurting," McCoy said. "He's been basically the face of the program, I think, since Donovan (McNabb) left (in 2010). He loves the city. But it's a business. You have your feelings about the team. But you go in history, man, you'll find so many different players leaving teams. That's how it works. They'll get over it eventually. I'm sure, right now, he's going through it, and so are the Eagles. All them '10' jerseys out there every Sunday, they're going to have to get new jerseys now. It's the same thing, man. You gotta live on. We've got to play them guys. I'm a friend, (but) I can't wait to go out there and beat on the Redskins ... I'm sure when he comes up to Philly, he wants to have a great game. We'll still be friends. We'll still text and chat, after the game ... He's got $16 million guaranteed (in his new Redskins contract). He's not happy?"
Despite his feelings for Jackson, McCoy seemed concerned that fans would get the wrong picture of Kelly's ego from the dispute. (Of course, one way to keep that from happening would be for Kelly to speak, which he hasn't done since Jackson's release).
"He's honest. He likes hard work," McCoy said of Kelly, who went 10-6 in his first season coaching the team. "And he's respectful ... I think people are getting the wrong picture -- 'oh, he's cut one of his best players' -- I don't think it's that. I think it's just that was a decision they made."