The Chargers offense was already dealt a major blow when LaDainian Tomlinson tore his groin muscle. Now they've got even more to deal with. Vincent Jackson, a favorite deep threat of quarterback Philip Rivers, was arrested on suspicion of drunk driving early Tuesday morning.
Jackson was booked on a misdemeanor and released from county jail before 6 a.m., a spokesman for the San Diego County Sheriff's department told the San Diego Union-Tribune.
Chargers General Manager A.J. Smith released a statement Tuesday before 1 p.m. stating: "We're aware of the off-the-field issue involving Vincent. Obviously we're disappointed. We take these issues very seriously. Moving forward, we will monitor the situation and have no further comment."
Jackson's status for Sunday's game against the Steelers is unknown at this point: the Chargers released a statement saying he will play, but it's not their call.
The NFL's Collective Bargaining Agreement forbids teams from doling out punishment for alcohol or drug offenses, and only the league can discipline players until the legal process concludes. That hasn't stopped teams from doing so, however. Pittsburgh's Santonio Holmes was suspended for one game this season after he was cited for marijuana possession.
Commissioner Roger Goodell can be unpredictable in the punishments he dishes out for these types of embarassments, but it's highly unlikely the league would suspend Jackson before the weekend. Given the nature of the game and Jackson's integral role in the Chargers offense, San Diego fans might still want to start praying for leniency.