Cross (shoulder) accepted a position Wednesday as an assistant coach at the University of Memphis, Jonah Jordan of The Daily Memphian reports.
Cross played 14 games for the Buccaneers in 2018, logging two catches for nine yards on five targets before ending the season on injured reserve due to a shoulder issue. Set to become a restricted free agent this offseason, the 25-year-old now faces the decision of whether to continue his playing career or return to his alma mater as a coach on a full-time basis. At least for the time being, Cross is keeping his options open for 2019 and could play if he receives the right offer, according to Greg Auman of The Athletic.
The shoulder injury that forced Cross to the sideline during Sunday's loss to the Ravens is severe enough to send the tight end to the injured reserve list as well. Cross' 2018 campaign comes to an end with two catches for nine yards on five targets in 14 games.
Cross was originally questionable to return before being downgraded. Anthony Auclair is the only other active tight end for the Buccaneers behind starter Cameron Brate.
As expected, Cross was essentially an afterthought in the Buccaneers' air attack. The versatile second-year pro is likely to enjoy active status for the remaining four games of the campaign, due to Tampa being short-handed at tight end with the season-ending ankle and foot injuries to O.J. Howard. However, Cross is slated to serve almost exclusively as a blocker, freeing Cameron Brate to fill the role of the pass-catching option at the position.
The second-year H-back only logged four snaps from scrimmage, and he continues to be an afterthought in the Buccaneers offense. With three players -- O.J. Howard, Cameron Brate and Anthony Auclair -- effectively in front of him on the tight depth chart, Cross currently possesses next to no fantasy value and remains valued primarily for his special teams work.
|2016||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||14||0||6||38||6.3||10||1||0||0||3|
|2017||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||8||4||5||58||11.6||23||0||1||0||3|
|2018||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||14||3||2||9||4.5||6||0||0||0||1|
|2016||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||14||2||2.0||0||0||0||0||0.0||0||0||0|
|2017||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||8||1||0.0||1||0||0||0||0.0||0||0||0|
|2018||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||14||3||3.0||0||0||0||0||0.0||0||0||0|