Fair or not, Jackson's image is changing

July, 5, 2010
7/05/10
2:00
PM ET
I’m sure he has other things to consider these days, but Vincent Jackson is seeing his image change dramatically this summer.

Jackson
Jackson
Until recently, Jackson was considered a throwback wide receiver. In an era of diva receivers, Jackson was different. He was quiet. He stayed out of headlines.

He is beloved by his teammates because of his hard-working attitude. How many No. 1 receivers attend special teams' meetings? Jackson does. In an interview last year, Jackson discussed being different than today’s receiver.

“And I’m OK with that. I enjoy that,” Jackson said. “Staying under the radar is not a problem when we have so many big-name guys on this team and very talented football players. I’m just doing my job, blending in, staying even keel and having fun out there.”

Jackson is no longer staying under the radar and blending in. In the slow days of the NFL summer, Jackson is now dominating headlines.

He has been embroiled in a contract issue with the Chargers and he is likely going to hold out well into the season. His name has been bandied about in trade talks. Although, ESPN"s Adam Schefter reports a trade is unlikely. He has just been suspended for three games after having two arrests for drunken driving.

I have gotten several letters from San Diego readers saying they think Jackson is a problem player and they hope the Chargers trade him.

It’s too bad because Jackson is truly a nice, quiet, hard-working player. He is not looking for the limelight nor does he look to cause waves a la Chad Ochocinco or Terrell Owens. But Jackson is now one of the hottest stories in the NFL and he has been lumped in with the group of high-maintenance receivers, whether he likes it or not.

Bill Williamson | email

ESPN Oakland Raiders reporter

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