I SAY, LET DeSean be DeSean.
As long as the Eagles' second-year wideout doesn't hurt himself, incur a crucial penalty, or inadvertently eject the ball before crossing the goal line, I don't care if he performs the balcony scene from "Romeo and Juliet" in the end zone.
I know center Jamaal Jackson was sincere when he went over to No. 10 and voiced his objections to the flip, slide and split after the 64-yard touchdown reception Sunday, but I just can't help but flash back 5 years, when Terrell Owens' post-TD "artistic statements" were just wonderful theater, as far as teammates and fans were concerned. Never saw Jamaal - or anyone else - tell T.O. to cool it. Of course, Jamaal spent the 2004 season on IR, but still.
Maybe the thinking in being concerned about this is that the celebrations are a step along the road to becoming as big a pain in the rear/distraction as T.O. If that really is the case, perhaps an intervention is warranted. (If not an outright exorcism.)
But Andy Reid, a pretty good barometer in such matters, did not seem concerned when asked about Sunday's display, either in his postgame presser or yesterday's day-after recap.
Reid, asked a question yesterday that practically begged him to praise Jamaal Jackson for upbraiding the young wideout, said only that he tells his players to "act like you've been there before." Then he allowed that if he were to say that to DeSean, the Eagles' emerging star might reply that he has indeed been there before - three times in three games.
"I don't mind a little personality," Reid concluded. "Adding a little spice to it doesn't hurt."
DeSean, by the way, said he was more careful with the flip-slide-into-split move than it must have seemed to those of us who might wind up in traction just thinking about trying it.
"It was like sliding into second base," he said last night on ESPN 950-AM's "DeSean Jackson Show." "I'm safe."
Jackson said Reid suggested he "go easy on the celebrations," but "it's really hard to take that out of my game."
Developing story lines
* Andy Reid thought Stacy Andrews' knee "looked stronger" in Andrews' relief effort of starter Max Jean-Gilles. "He was getting better separation," Reid said. Reid also said Jean-Gilles will be working to reduce some shoulder inflammation during the bye week. He didn't say that could open the door to Andrews regaining the starting job at right guard, but we're going to guess it could.
* Everybody loves the way Brent Celek battles for yardage, but as Celek himself noted Sunday, sometimes it might be smarter to go down. Guys who play like that really get banged up, which has been a bit of an issue for Celek. If it happens this season, it would be a bit of an issue for the Eagles, with Alex Smith as his backup, and Cornelius Ingram already done for the year. Celek, BTW, ranked second in the NFC, third in the NFL, going into last night's action with 22 catches (for 245 yards).
* With Tampa (26th), Oakland (31st) and Washington (13th) on the immediate horizon, the Eagles' defense won't face a top-10 offense again until Nov. 1, at home against the Giants.
Andy Reid said he thought his starting offensive lineup Sunday averaged 24 years old, but he asked reporters to double-check that before proclaiming it hither and yon. So we did. The actual average was 24.545455.
That the Chiefs' master plan was to pay Matt Cassel $40.5 million over the next 3 years to hand the ball off, while they establish their identity as a running team. Even though Larry Johnson runs about as fast as Larry David these days. Hmm.
One of the things Andy Reid was asked about yesterday was his plan for Michael Vick during the bye week. Reid said he had a few tasks in mind for Vick, as he completes his return to football after nearly a 3-year absence, but "I want him to get out of here, though, for a little and freshen up, along with all of them, and come back ready to go."
When you thought about it, that made a lot of sense. Vick's introductory press conference here was Aug. 15, and he has been under the microscope just about every minute since, on and off the field. Regardless of how you feel about the Eagles signing him - if this were my team, I'd have been happy to watch another owner garner the honor - Vick has to be emotionally exhausted.
Vick was an inconsequential part of the Eagles' victory Sunday, but after the game my inbox was sprinkled with e-mails from PR people drawing my attention to what this or that analyst had said - not about Kevin Kolb or DeSean Jackson or LeSean McCoy or Brent Celek, but about Vick.
From Fox Sports: "Bradshaw: Vick Should Never Reference 'Superman' Again; It's About Team."
From CBS: "Boomer [Esiason] on Vick: I don't believe he will be a Philadelphia Eagle Next Year."
From SI.com: "In this week's edition of Monday Morning Quarterback, Peter King speaks with Eagles quarterback Michael Vick for the first time in 3 years."
(On that last one, Mr. PR fellow, you're really touting the fact that your guy hasn't talked to Michael Vick in 3 years? Like, that makes it extra-special? Hokay.)
Yeah, I can see that getting away from all this for a few days would be a good thing.