There are a couple of signs that a player who is injured may have a serious problem:
- He needs to be carted off the field.
- He slams his helmet in disgust after he’s hurt.
Both those things happened at Tampa Bay Buccaneers practice Thursday morning when starting center Ryan Jensen went down in a heap during drills.
It’s obviously unclear what the injury is but reports say it looked like a “left leg” issue.
Backup Robert Hainsey stepped in at Jensen’s position with the starting line. Obviously he is not Jensen-good at this stage because the injured player was a Pro Bowl selection last year and is considered the anchor of the Tampa offensive line.
Jensen’s presence is important to the Buccaneers in the middle of the offensive line because he’s a known commodity on a team that is working in new starters at both left and right guard. And, quarterback Tom Brady is not a fan of pressure up the middle.
Jensen, it should be noted, has been a very durable player as he’s started 81 consecutive games dating back to 2017.
Amazingly, this injury happened in a limited contact practice. The Buccaneers are not scheduled to go into full padded practices until Monday.
Coach Todd Bowles will speak with media after practice and may be able to provide more details on the Jensen situation.
[UPDATE: Bowles told reporters it is a knee injury but that the severity of it is not yet known.]
[UPDATE 2: Club general manager Jason Licht told reporters it may take days to get a full understanding of Jensen’s injury due to swelling. He added that the possibility of not having Jensen “deflates everybody.” As to the timetable, the facts are MRIs can be quite accurate within hours.]
This is a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available.
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