Jonathan Vilma injury: Saints LB placed on IR after 1 game

Kevin C. Cox

New Orleans lost one of its better players before his seasons ever got off the ground.

New Orleans Saints middle linebacker Jonathan Vilma is out for the season after only playing one game, being placed on season-ending injured reserve, according to NFL.com.

It is unclear whether Vilma sustained a new injury or simply was continuing to have problems with his knee, which kept him out of the first seven games of the year. At 31 years old, this injury has the possibility of signaling the end of a once-great player's career.

Vilma was taken in the first round of the 2004 NFL Draft by the New York Jets and made a name for himself almost immediately. During four seasons with Gang Green, Vilma racked up six interceptions and had three great years, registering over 100 tackles in each including a career-high 169 in 2005.

Upon being traded to New Orleans, Vilma had three more seasons of 100-plus tackles and won Super Bowl XLIV. In the last three years, Vilma has had trouble staying on the field, playing in only 23 games.

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