Because the trade deadline is coming up, and because the Buccaneers are in flux, and because Vincent Jackson is 31, it’s reasonable to think he’ll make phones ring.
But the veteran wide receiver said Thursday he wants to stay put, and fix things with the Bucs.
“In this business, those kind of things get talked about quite often. Each and every year, there’s going to be guys moved around to different teams,” Jackson said, via Greg Auman of the Tampa Bay Times. “I’m not surprised by it. Obviously I appreciate teams’ interest, but I’m happy here in Tampa. I’ve heard nothing here that would suggest I’m going anywhere. I’m going to let that pass on and keep doing my job.”
Jackson leads the team in receptions, and has value despite his contract (two years at $10 million each). But he said he wants to stay and continue to the building project coach Lovie Smith has begun.
“That’s exactly what I want to do here,” Jackson said. “Bringing Lovie (Smith) in and the staff that he’s brought, his mentality and his goals are aligned with mine and a lot of guys in this locker room. I hope for us to start the tradition here of winning football in Tampa Bay and to stay in this uniform and this jersey and help bring that here.”
Now the only question is whether the Bucs think Jackson could be a bigger part of that than whatever pick they’d get in return.