If there was concern that Bucs rookie defensive tackle Vita Vea had suffered a season-ending knee injury in last week's game, it apparently didn't come from Vea himself.
After the Bucs' 37-34 loss at Cincinnati, the team worried that Vea had torn his ACL. Head coach Dirk Koetter said Monday that Vea suffered the injury on the team's first defensive play of the fourth quarter, but Vea remained in the game and showed no sign of favoring his leg.
An MRI performed on Vea's knee didn't reveal any structural damage.
Speaking Wednesday, Vea made it seem like the test was precautionary — though having a test like an MRI on the knee would suggest otherwise — and added that he believes there's a "100 percent" chance that he plays this week at Carolina.
"I knew I was fine," Vea said. "I knew nothing was wrong. I think the doctors were just being cautious about it."
Bucs defensive coach Mark Duffner said Vea never told him that he was injured during the game. Vea played throughout the fourth quarter, even dropping back in coverage on a few plays and lining up at rush end once.
"He never mentioned it at all, and thank the lord that at least the report we got earlier in the week was a positive one and we'll just see how he goes this week," Duffner said. "But he never said a word about it."
Vea participated in Wednesday's practice and didn't appear to be limited.
Contact Eduardo A. Encina at email@example.com. Follow @EddieInTheYard