Buccaneers center Ryan Jensen (knee) activated off injured reserve, expected to play vs. Cowboys

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ beleaguered offensive line will get some aid for Monday night’s wild-card showdown with the Dallas Cowboys.

The Bucs announced center Ryan Jensen was activated from injured reserve Monday morning, making him eligible to play. Jensen suffered a knee injury early in training camp and has been on injured reserve since Sept. 1.

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NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Jensen received plenty of first-team practice reps last week and is expected to play against Dallas. The Bucs opened his practice window late last month.

Jensen’s return is a big boon for a Bucs offense that has struggled without the veteran center. The Bucs averaged a league-low 76.9 rushing yards per game in 2022. Jensen playing should immediately help Tampa’s rushing attack against a Cowboy defense susceptible to the ground game. He also brings stability for Tom Brady, who has had to get rid of the ball quickly behind a banged-up offensive line.

The Bucs still have O-line questions, with guard Nick Leverett (knee, shoulder) doubtful to play and center Robert Hainsey (hamstring) questionable. But getting Jensen back for the postseason is a massive addition for a Tampa offense that struggled for the balance of the 2022 campaign.

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