Missing all but one quarter of action this season, Washington Redskins wide receiver DeSean Jackson believes he's as close as he's been all season to returning to action.
DeSean Jackson wouldn't put an exact percentage on the possibility that he returns to the field this weekend, but the wide receiver did say that "everything looks good" and he "should be out there."
"You know, back out here getting that extra bonus day in, just really get acclimated, get back in the flow of things," Jackson told reporters on Monday about his hamstring. "You can run, you can do everything, but it's different from getting out on the football field and actually running a route versus a defender, having to stop and break and things like that. As far as today went, I feel good. Hopefully throughout the week, I can progress and just continue to get stronger."
Jackson has not played since suffering a hamstring injury in the first quarter of the team's season opener against the Miami Dolphins.
He took gradual steps over the few weeks of practice, testing his hamstring more and more, but only got as close as "doubtful" for gamedays.
Jackson used the team's Bye Week last week to his advantage, as he tested out where exactly the health of his hamstring is.
"[I] was able to go out there without feeling it so that's a good thing," he said. "Today, it's early, it's Monday, so I didn't try to go full speed, top speed, I just got in a groove, feeling good and everyday we'll be a build on day, leading up to Sunday."
Jackson, of course, is one of the game's top deep threats.
In his first season with the Redskins, the University of California product averaged almost 21 yards per reception while leading the NFL in 40-yard receptions with 13, five more than anyone else.
He wants to make sure his top-end speed is there before getting back in the game.
"The hamstring, you always tend to think of it, you don't want to re-injure, things like that," Jackson said. "So really just building up confidence so you can be successful and feel good."
If Jackson does indeed return this weekend, it will be against a New England Patriots team that has started the season a perfect 7-0 record.
While their offense often gets the praise with Tom Brady leading a high-scoring attack, the defense has flown under the radar this season.
It will be a tough test for the Redskins, but the type for which Jackson, a player known for his big-time moments, lives.
"They're a great team, Super Bowl champs," Jackson said. "They're having a great year this year. I feel like it's a great opportunity to come back. The team had a great win last week before the bye, so just trying to get momentum. Go out there and play a good team, hopefully knock 'em off."