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Bucs' Ryan Jensen Didn't Have Knee Surgery on Torn ACL, MCL, PCL Injuries, Fracture

Adam WellsJanuary 17, 2023

TAMPA, FLORIDA - JANUARY 16: Ryan Jensen #66 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers warms up prior to a game against the Dallas Cowboys in the NFC Wild Card playoff game at Raymond James Stadium on January 16, 2023 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Amid rumors and speculation about the knee injury he suffered during training camp, Tampa Bay Buccaneers center Ryan Jensen divulged how badly damaged it was after he played in Monday's NFC Wild Card Game against the Dallas Cowboys.

Jensen told reporters following the Bucs' 31-14 loss he played through a torn ACL, MCL, PCL and had damage to his mensicus, a fracture and bone chip.

"It was a pretty severe injury," he explained. "A lot of people I know were confused why I didn't have surgery. I ended up tearing my MCL, my ACL and my PCL. I flipped my meniscus. I had a fracture and another little bone chip thing. It was a major injury, and I was as fortunate as I could be with the way the injury happened that I didn't have to have surgery and it was able to heal on its own in five months. Some call it dumb, but I'm a football player and football players play football."

Jensen originally suffered the injury during practice on July 28 and had to be carted off the field.

Despite some speculation about the severity of the injury, the Buccaneers remained tight-lipped about the full extent of the issue throughout the season. Head coach Todd Bowles only told reporters afterward the 31-year-old was likely going to miss months.

Jensen's injury was the start of a string of issues for Tampa's offensive line throughout the season. Aaron Stinnie, who was coming off a knee injury last season, tore his ACL during the preseason.

Tristan Wirfs missed four games late in the season with an ankle injury before returning in Week 16.

The Bucs officially placed Jensen on injured reserve on Sept. 1. Robert Hainsey, Jensen's replacement, started all 17 games at center during the regular season.

Tampa Bay opened Jensen's 21-day practice window on Dec. 21. It gave him the opportunity to play in a postseason game if his knee was stable enough to hold up in games.

Jensen was officially activated off injured reserve on Monday. He played all 82 offensive snaps against the Cowboys.

Even though things didn't go as well as the Buccaneers were hoping for in their playoff game, Jensen's return from a knee injury that would normally keep a player out for the entire season is impressive.

Prior to this season, Jensen started every game since the 2017 season. He signed a four-year contract with the Bucs in March 2018 after spending four seasons with the Baltimore Ravens.