Former star wide receiver of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Vincent Jackson was found dead in a Brandon, Florida, hotel room Monday, law enforcement authorities reported.
He was 38.
The cause of death has yet to be determined, pending autopsy results. The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office is investigating. Police said there were no obvious signs of trauma.
Jackson, who lived in Tampa, checked into the Homewood Suites on Jan. 11 and had been staying there ever since, the hotel staff told police.
After his family filed a missing person’s report last week, police located him at the hotel, where he stayed after officers assessed his well-being.
Jackson was not only known for his skill on the field but also for his charitable work in his community. He founded the Jackson in Action 83 Foundation to support military families.
“My heart aches for the many loved ones Vincent Jackson leaves behind, from his wife and children to the Buccaneers nation that adored him,” Huntington County Sheriff Chad Chronister said in a statement.
Jackson was made an honorary deputy three years ago to “recognize his dedication to the community,” Chronister noted. “He will be sorely missed by not only football fans across the country but also the people here in Hillsborough County who reaped the benefits of his generous contributions.”
A statement from the Bucs hailed Jackson as a “consummate professional” and a “dedicated father, husband, businessman and philanthropist, who made a deep impact on our community through his unyielding advocacy for military families.”
Jackson played for the Buccaneers for five years until he retired in 2016. He totaled 1,000 or more receiving yards three times in his five seasons with the Bucs and was named the team’s man of the year four times.
He played his first seven seasons with the Los Angeles Chargers, when the team was based in San Diego.
Jackson racked up a total of six 1,000-yard receiving campaigns and tallied 540 catches for 9,080 yards and 57 touchdowns over his career.
“We are shocked and deeply saddened by news of Vincent Jackson’s sudden passing,” the Chargers said in a statement. “Vincent was a fan favorite not only for his Pro Bowl play on the field, but for the impact he made on the community. The work he has done on behalf of military families through his foundation in the years since his retirement has been an inspiration to all of us.”
Jackson, who grew up in Colorado and played football at the University of Northern Colorado, is survived by his wife, Lindsey, and children Carter, Amaya and Dominick.