BRANDON, Florida — Former Northern Colorado star football and basketball player Vincent Jackson is dead at the age of 38, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office in Florida.
WTSP in Tampa Bay, where Jackson was a member of the Buccaneers for five years, reported he was found dead at a hotel room in Brandon, Florida on Monday morning. No cause of death was immediately released, but the sheriff's office said there were no apparent signs of trauma.
Jackson had been staying at the Homewood Suites in Brandon since Jan. 11 and was reported missing by his family last week, according to the sheriff's office. Deputies were able to get in touch with Jackson on Feb 12. and assessed his well-being and closed the case, the sheriff's office said. A housekeeper found Jackson dead Monday morning.
Jackson grew up in Colorado Springs and attended Widefield High School where he excelled in football and basketball. He played both sports and Northern Colorado, eventually being selected by the San Diego Chargers in the 2nd Round of the 2005 NFL Draft (61st overall).
He played 12 seasons in the NFL with the Chargers and Buccaneers, making three Pro Bowls and catching more than 1,000 yards through the air in six different seasons.
Hillsborough Sheriff Chad Chronister issued the following statement on Jackson's death:
"My heart aches for the many loved ones Vincent Jackson leaves behind, from his wife and children to the Buccaneers nation that adored him. Mr. Jackson was a devoted man who put his family and community above everything else. Football aside, he touched countless lives through his Jackson In Action 83 Foundation. We shared a passion for supporting military families, and three years ago, Jackson was even made an honorary deputy by the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office to recognize his dedication to the community. 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.”
Both Northern Colorado football and the Denver Broncos offered their condolences on Twitter.
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