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Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Monken: DeSean Jackson took the money and better be great

DeSean Jackson signed a three-year, $33.5-million contract as a Redskins' free agent in March with $20-million guaranteed.

ANDRES LEIVA | Times

DeSean Jackson signed a three-year, $33.5-million contract as a Redskins' free agent in March with $20-million guaranteed.

If you think the Bucs will pressure DeSean Jackson to live up to his contract, well, you’re right on the money.

At least that’s the message from offensive coordinator/receivers coach Todd Monken to the 30-year-old Jackson, who signed a three-year, $33.5-million contract as a Redskins' free agent in March with $20-million guaranteed.

The Bucs have a pretty good group of receivers with Mike Evans, Adam Humphries and Chris Godwin, a third-round pick from Penn State. But by far, the biggest addition this off-season was Jackson, whose speed should draw some defensive heat off of Evans and help stretch the field for quarterback Jameis Winston.

But Monken has informed Jackson he has to be a ‘great player,’ in 2017, because that’s how the Bucs are paying him. Jackson had 56 catches for 1,005 yards (17.9 avg.) last season, but has had only four touchdowns in each of the last two years.

“How can we get DeSean Jackson up to playing at a really high level? Not that he’s still not capable of it, but how do we get him to play at why we paid him?’’ Monken said Thursday.  “I’ve told him that, ‘we have paid you a hell of a lot of money to be a damn good player. We’re not paying you a lot of money, this is a contract where we’re paying you for what you’ve done for us…we’re not paying like (Derek) Jeter the last three years…we don’t have any old street cred that we’re paying you. No. We need you to be a great player now. Okay? That’s why we gave you the money.

“You came here because of the money. Don’t give me all that bull about you came here because of the weather and Jameis. No. You came here because we paid you the most. You need to play like that. He gets that. He’s smart enough to understand that.’’

[Last modified: Thursday, May 18, 2017 2:12pm]

    

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