After Sunday's season finale win agains the Redskins, Eagles wideout DeSean Jackson reflected upon his tumultuous season and admitted that at times his contract dispute got the best of him.
"I think I have learned a lot about how this is a business and professionally how to come to work and not let things affect me," he said. "I can admit to certain things affecting me during the season. I just want to apologize, I could have handled things a little differently."
Jackson caught four passes for 86 yards, including a 62-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter Sunday. The catch was his longest of the season, and only his second of the year longer than 45 yards. In 2010, Jackson caught six such passes from Michael Vick.
After a down year, the soon-to-be free agent doesn't know if he'll be back in 2012.
"I don't know whether I will be here next year or not. It is out of my control and power. I hope I will be here. These guys on this team and the fans, this is home," he said.
Jackson indicated he would accept the franchise tag, a one-year guaranteed contract, if the Eagles chose to apply it, but he certainly wants more.
"The year had a lot of ups and downs for me and the team," DeSean said. "We just have to move forward. Everything in life happens for a reason. My situation and the team's situation, it all happens for a reason. God has a plan. I just wanted to say that I stuck with it and fought through the best way I could, regardless of how I started. I just wanted to put everything behind me and play well for this team. I think I was able to do that."
Whatever happens, Jackson seems to have come to some realization that he may not have approached the situation as professionally as possible. He talked about some of the lessons he learned from this frustrating season:
"Honestly, it's about only fighting the battles that you can control. At the end of the day, I play football. It's what I do and it's what my job is. I can't really get frustrated over contract situations or how I am paid -- how I think I should be.
"Whatever the case may be, I can't really allow that to bother me. I am young and I went through what I went through, but I was able to shake myself out of it and come back to reality. I gave it my all, played hard and did everything the right way. You can tell a lot about a person and his character to see how they finish, not how they started."
The question now is where that start will be next season.