The main storyline all week leading up to Sunday's Redskins-Eagles matchup in Philadelphia was whether or not Redskins wide receiver DeSean Jackson could overcome a sprained left shoulder to make his first-ever appearance against his former team — not to mention in front of his former home crowd.
Jackson — who didn't even participate in practice until Friday — was a gametime decision on Sunday, but ended up playing through the pain to turn in his best performance in a Washington uniform to date, catching five passes for 117 yards and a long touchdown in the Redskins' 37-34 loss to the Eagles.
Here's an exclusive look from the Washington Redskins' sideline during their Week 3 game with the Philadelphia Eagles.
"Out there, I am just trying to help my team win the game and I'm going to give everything to give a great effort," Jackson said after the game. "I think it was a great game and credit to the other team who also did a great job, but we fought all the way to the end. It's just unfortunate that we did not win the game."
It didn't take long for Jackson — who was released by the Eagles in March — to learn both those in the crowd and his opponents on the field would be less-than-brotherly on Sunday.
On the Redskins' first drive of the game, quarterback Kirk Cousins found Jackson for a first down on 2nd and 9 when Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins came flying in late and delivered a blow towards Jackson's injured left shoulder.
Jackson retaliated by shoving Jenkins, and the Eagles' Nate Allen shoved Jackson right back, earning a personal foul penalty in the process — and boos from the Lincoln Financial Field crowd.
Jackson said the short scrum was just "the game of football."
"Like I said, it's high energy and guys are doing anything and everything to try to knock you out of the game or to make a boneheaded play, but that's the give and take of football," Jackson said. "But it was nothing too big. I actually created a penalty, so I guess I won that one."
Jackson's biggest play of the day came late in the third quarter with the Redskins trailing 27-20. On 1st and 10 from the Washington 19-yard line, Cousins — on play action — found Jackson deep, who caught the ball around the Eagles' 25-yard line, broke an attempted tackle by cornerback Cary Williams, and took it the rest of the way for the 81-yard touchdown that, after the extra point, tied the game at 27.
While in the end zone, Jackson made sure to flap his wings for the 69,596 in attendance.
"I'm just out there playing the game with a lot of energy and a lot of excitement," he said. "That's something I've always done. I just try to do the best to support my team with energy."
Jackson's performance was the 21st 100-yard receiving game of his career, and first with the Redskins.
Redskins head coach Jay Gruden said he was happy with the way Jackson competed, despite playing with a sore shoulder.
"I'm proud of the way he played," Gruden said. "I'm proud that he came out here and competed – despite being very sore – and put together a good game."
Jackson said he's looking forward to his next chance to play against his former team, which is Dec. 20 at FedExField.
"We will get another game against them down the road," he said.