“With a heavy heart,” cornerback Alterraun Verner will help the Tampa Bay Bucs battle the Seattle Seahawks this Sunday at Raymond James Stadium.

After landing on Friday’s injury report with a “Not Injury Related” designation, it was revealed Saturday that Verner’s father has passed away. According to a press release from the team, Robert Lee Verner died Friday morning in Tampa.

Despite the tragic loss a day after Thanksgiving, Verner said he will be suiting up with his Tampa Bay teammates Sunday and playing in remembrance of his father. 

“With a heavy heart, we sadly report the loss of our beloved father, husband, grandpa and friend, Robert Lee Verner,” Alterraun Verner wrote in a statement attached to the press release. “We are thankful for his love and support. Thank you to everyone for your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time. He will forever be cherished and missed.”

Last week in Kansas City, Verner saw his most extensive action since Week 3 against the Los Angeles Rams. The 46 defensive snaps he played against the Chiefs are far more than he’s contributed in the past six games combined (nine). The Bucs went to Verner after Brent Grimes went down early with an injury. Verner had been limited to special teams duties since the team settled on Grimes and Vernon Hargreaves III as its outside corners and Jude Adjei-Barimah at nickelback.

Shop the newest Tampa Bay Buccaneers fan gear at Fanatics!


  1. Alterraun, sorry to hear about your loss.

    Please wait...
  2. It’s tough to play in a game like this after losing such a close family member, but often Athletes have their best games right after a tragedy where they are mentally challenged. It takes a lot of courage to concentrate on football after losing a close family relative. Verner knows how big a game this is for Tampa.

    Please wait...
  3. Prayers to Alterraun and his family.

    Please wait...
  4. A good man would want his son to focus more on his passion and what makes him happy rather than spend the time mourning.

    Alteraun’s decision to play is a reflection of that. I don’t know the family, nor do I personally know Alteraun, but based on how much of a professional Alteraun has been, and the fact that he wants to play despite such a great lost speaks not only about Alteraun’s character, but Mr. Robert Lee Verner’s character as well.

    Alteraun won’t just be playing to honor his father, but rather playing to honor his family and it’s legacy. It doesn’t matter if he has a monster game, what matters is that he’s showing the kind of heart and mental toughness that we should all have.

    Good luck to you Alteraun, and dear thoughts to you and yours.

    Please wait...
  5. Alteraun, if you ever venture out here to read this madenss, let me give you my deepest sympathies.
    Simon, I agree with you 100 percent.
    What you wrote was eloquently stated.

    Please wait...
  6. Alteraun, Did you father love to watch you throw some smack down on the teams you played against? I’m thinking yes.
    Way to man up and play in such circumstances. Have a great game and make your Old man proud.
    Deepest sympathy to you and yours.

    Please wait...