Vea recorded one sack across 28 defensive snaps in Sunday's loss to the Redskins.
Vea reached the quarterback for the first time in his young career Sunday afternoon and was one of three sacks on the day for the Buccaneers. Vea's 28 reps (48 percent) slightly edge out Beau Allen's 27 -- as the two continue to play rotational roles on the defensive line alongside veteran Gerald McCoy.
Vea (knee) is not listed on Wednesday's injury report.
Vea's total lack of an injury designation is surprising, considering that the rookie underwent an MRI earlier this week after suffering a knee injury during Sunday's loss to the Bengals. The first-round pick has battled injuries all season, including missing the first three games of 2018, so it's great news for the Buccaneers if Vea did not suffer a notable injury of any kind. Barring any setbacks, Vea appears on track to suit up against the Panthers on Sunday.
Vea had an MRI Monday that came back negative for an ACL tear, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.
Vea injured his knee Sunday against the Bengals and the team feared he may be done for the season with a torn ACL. He will likely still miss some time due to the injury, but the team hasn't given a timetable for his return. Look for Beau Allen or Rakem Nunez-Roches to see extra snaps for as long as Vea is sidelined or limited.
Vea, who missed the first three games of the season due to a calf injury, is progressively getting his conditioning up to par, Carmen Vitali of the team's official site reports. "Vita looks like a guy that is still getting his legs under him," head coach Dirk Koetter said. "I think Coach Buckner said it best, that Vita's basically played his third preseason game or maybe he's around his first game where everybody else is six games into the season. I mean he looks like a guy that's still finding his way with his pad level a little bit, with his conditioning."
The gargantuan rookie played a season-high 38 snaps in a Week 7 overtime win over the Browns, but he managed just one solo tackle. He'd netted the same result in the Week 6 loss to the Falcons, and he was held off the stat sheet altogether against the Bears in his Week 4 professional debut. While those numbers are discouraging on the surface, Vea's learning curve has naturally been negatively impacted by his extended absence, which dated all the way back to late July. Subsequent weeks are likely to bring better results, considering Vea's pedigree.
Vea will start at defensive tackle in Sunday's game against the Browns in place of Gerald McCoy (calf), Scott Smith of the team's official site reports.
The 2018 first-round pick didn't even make his debut until Week 4 due to a calf injury of his own, and he'll now step in for his Pro Bowl teammate versus Cleveland. Vea will look to help contain rookie quarterback Baker Mayfield and a Browns backfield now helmed by fellow first-year player Nick Chubb in the wake of Carlos Hyde's trade to the Jaguars on Friday.
|11||11/18/18||@ NYG||1:00 pm|
|15||12/16/18||@ BAL||1:00 pm|
|16||12/23/18||@ DAL||1:00 pm|
|2018||Tampa Bay Buccaneers||6||3||2.0||1||1||0||0||0.0||0||0||0|