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Silence continues on if Bucs Vincent Jackson retires or signs elsewhere

Roy Cummings



Photo by Icon Sportswire

The days of Vincent Jackson catching passes and mentoring young wide receivers for the Buccaneers appear to be over. We’ve known that, since the Bucs hinted strongly that they were ready to move on during the NFL Scouting Combine.

What you have to wonder now is whether the days of Vincent Jackson catching passes and mentoring young wide receivers anywhere else in the NFL are over as well?

The last we heard anything publicly about Jackson was a report from ESPN’s Adam Caplan, who cited an unnamed source (probably Jackson’s agent) saying that Jackson had no intentions of retiring.  That report came amid great speculation that Jackson might indeed be calling it quits.

It was an indication that Jackson felt he still had something to give a team, and he actually may, but here we are three weekends into free agency and we’ve yet to hear a peep about interest in Jackson.

If indeed we have reached the point where no team sees any value in Jackson, it’ll make for a sad end to a great career. But if Jackson is healthy again after missing parts of the last two seasons, because of the same coincidental knee problem, then he could be a worthy pick-up.

No, Jackson is no longer the kind of player you can build your offense around. He’s lost some speed and even when he was healthy last year he struggled to get open and sometimes even to catch the ball.

But Jackson is a consummate pro, and there’s little to suggest he couldn’t at least provide a team with a solid possession-type element coming out of the slot, where his size would almost surely give him an edge over smaller third or nickel corners.

He’d probably come rather cheap, too. has put Jackson’s market value at $4.6 million, but a team may be able to get him for a little less. After all, Jackson is now competing for work right along with all the members of the 2017 draft class.

Or, at 33, after repeatedly talking on the record about putting down roots in Tampa, Jackson may be done. All we have at the moment is silence.

Roy Cummings is a native of Chicago, Illinois who grew up in the suburb of Lombard. He and his family later moved to Lakeland, Florida, where Roy attended high school at Kathleen High. He graduated from the University of South Florida with a Bachelor's Degree in Mass Communications in 1983 and immediately went to work for the Tampa Tribune. After five years working in a Polk County bureau covering everything from high school sports to college football to the Orlando Magic of the NBA, Roy moved back to Tampa and became the Tribune's first beat writer for the Tampa Bay Lightning, covering the team from its inception through the first eight years on the ice. He was then moved to the Buccaneers beat, where he stayed until the paper was folded in May, 2016. A two-time Florida Sports Writer of the Year, Roy has extensive experience covering all Tampa professional sports teams, including the Tampa Bay Rays.

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