First, the Eagles paid big money to sign several of the top free agents on the market -- cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha, defensive tackle Cullen Jenkins and defensive end Jason Babin -- in hopes of piecing together a Super Bowl contender. Then, just before the season kicked off, quarterback Michael Vick was rewarded with a six-year deal worth $100 million after a phenomenal 2010 season.
Throughout the entire process, DeSean Jackson, Vick's No. 1 target, sat back and wondered when the team would take care of him, too.
"I was just praying for the best for my situation to happen, knowing how I came in and worked so hard ..." Jackson said in an interview with NFL Network's Michael Irvin. "And, you know, I felt I did everything the right way. I did everything how I was supposed to do. And I just really want the best for myself, honestly.
"But sitting back and seeing Nnamdi come in and get a big check, you know, Cullen, all these guys, I mean, it's deserved. But I was just sitting back, just patiently waiting, just hopefully something will happen."
Jackson is still hoping.
This season has been a disaster for the Eagles, who are 3-6 despite the big-name additions, which included the trade for cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. At the forefront of the drama surrounding the team has been Jackson's highly publicized contract situation. The fourth-year receiver was clear before the start of the season that a $565,000 salary wasn't suitable for a two-time Pro Bowl selection and one of the NFL's most explosive players, which led to an 11-day holdout from training camp.
Jackson didn't prolong his holdout because he had no desire to be a distraction. When he did show up, it was under the impression that the organization was ready to discuss an extension in good faith. He even felt at one point that the two sides were on their way to a deal.
"You have the president, you have the general manager, you know, the coach, and things like that. ... It's just certain things that, you know, I felt was said," Jackson said. "I'm not gonna sit here and say anything was promised or anything was guaranteed. But it's just the way things was made to be seemed."
One thing is clear: Jackson hasn't been himself while dealing with his state of unrest. He has just 29 catches for 503 yards and two touchdowns, which certainly doesn't help his cause. Even more detrimental, though, was coach Andy Reid's decision last week to deactivate Jackson for missing a team meeting, which the receiver has clarified was a special teams meeting.
That incident has triggered discussion in the media about Jackson possibly associating with the wrong people. That's something he takes offense to, especially if it's a factor in the Eagles' reluctance to pay him what he believes is right.
"Deep down in my heart, I know (Coach Reid) knows me. And, you know, he knows I'm a loving, giving person," Jackson said. "I love my family, the friends I grew up with. These are the people that surround me on a everyday basis. It's not like I became this NFL superstar person and have a whole new crew or crowd with me that I just met.
"These are people I grew up and was raised with. So, for people to say certain things, it bothers me. And I'm never that type of guy. I have no record. I've never been in a drug program. No criminal (history) -- like, I'm clean. So it bothers me when people say certain things like that."
It's clear Jackson is unhappy right now. Whether or not he stays in Philly, after all that has been said and done, remains a big question mark.