Vincent Jackson's knee felt a little sore following Tampa Bay's 17-14 victory at Carolina on Oct. 10. Now we know why.
The veteran Buccaneers receiver was placed on injured reserve Tuesday with a torn ACL that will end his season.
“This is obviously very disappointing for me personally," Jackson in a team release. "I had high hopes for this season because I know what we are capable of accomplishing as a team. My top priority going into every season is being out there with my teammates and helping my team any way possible. While I may not be on the field for the foreseeable future, I will be focused on beginning my rehab as soon as possible and finding ways to support my teammates in whatever way I can."
Jackson didn't miss any time in Tampa's win over the Panthers. He finished the game with three receptions for 36 yards, but two of those catches came on the final, game-winning drive. Jackson, in his 12th NFL season, has 15 receptions for 173 yards this year. With the Bucs since 2012, Jackson ranks third in franchise history with 4,326 yards on 268 receptions.
With only four healthy receivers on the roster, the Bucs will look to add somebody at the position to provide depth. Mike Evans leads the team with 32 receptions for 449 yards and four touchdowns.
"Any time you lose a player and team leader of Vincent’s caliber, it is a setback for your team," Tampa Bay coach Dirk Koetter said. "Vincent is a very tough-minded player and a great competitor. Even though he doesn’t recall when he injured his knee, he was still out there the entire game and made two crucial catches on our final drive to set up the game-winning field goal. I know that being placed on injured reserve is difficult for him, but I also know he will maintain a strong presence in our locker room and will help our younger guys prepare and develop because that’s the type of team-first leader he is."