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Bucs Kendell Beckwith will miss season amid fears ankle injury could be career-ending

The LSU linebacker suffered an ankle injury as a passenger in a car accident in April 2018
Tampa Bay Buccaneers middle linebacker Kendell Beckwith (51) during an NFL football game against the Arizona Cardinals, Sunday, Oct. 15, 2017, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

TAMPA — After numerous evaluations from orthopedic specialists, linebacker Kendell Beckwith will be placed on the reserve/non-football injury list by the Bucs, meaning he will miss at least a second straight season.

In fact, the Bucs are fearful that Beckwith’s injury might be career-ending.

Related: MORE Bucs: Devin White's number change is apparently a big deal

Beckwith, a third-round pick from LSU in 2017, was a passenger in an automobile accident with Tigers teammate Lamin Barrow on April 12, 2018, fracturing his ankle and undergoing surgery.

He was placed on the reserve/non-football injury list last September 1 to start the season and tried to return Oct. 31. But after three weeks of practice, he was unable to regain his form and missed the entire season.

It would be a devastating outcome for the 24-year-old Beckwith, who needed only eight months to recover from a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his knee at LSU to play as a rookie for the Bucs.

The 6-foot-3, 243-pound Beckwith demonstrated amazing versatility, playing ever linebacker position as a rookie. He had 73 tackles, one sack and one forced fumble in his first pro season with the Bucs.

The news was not totally unexpected, but it comes only little more than a week after defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul sustained a fractured vertebrae in his neck after crashing his Ferrari into a concrete barrier on I-95 May 2. If Pierre-Paul needs surgery, he could miss the season.

The Bucs drafted LSU linebacker Devin White No. 5 overall and signed Cardinals free agent Deone Bucannon in the off-season.