TAMPA ― Tom Brady wasted no time trying to get the Bucs’ band back together.
Center Ryan Jensen, who was set to enter the free-agent negotiating period Monday, agreed to terms on a three-year, $39 million contract only a few hours after Brady unretired.
Jensen was named to his first Pro Bowl last season and has snapped for Brady since the quarterback’s arrival in Tampa Bay in the spring of 2020. The new deal includes $23 million guaranteed.
In fact, one of the first calls Brady made to his new teammates two years ago was to Jensen, and he painstakingly explained the process of how to keep the football dry.
It involves two towels and plenty of talcum powder, but Jensen obliged.
Jensen, 30, has been a tone-setter for the Bucs’ offensive line and is known for his physicality that can sometimes continue past the whistle.
The Bucs’ first priority has been to retain as many offensive linemen as possible. On Saturday, they re-signed free-agent guard Aaron Stinnie to a one-year, $1.4 million contract that could be worth as much as $2.5 million with incentives.
“For me, it’s a definite priority,” Bucs general manager Jason Licht said of re-signing Jensen during the NFL scouting combine two weeks ago.
Starting right guard Alex Cappa also is due to test free agency, and the Bucs are hopeful of returning an offensive line that allowed only 22 sacks last season.
Agent Mike McCartney announced that Jensen was returning to the Bucs Sunday night.
“Pumped for (Jensen) agreeing to a 3 year deal with the @Buccaneers,” he tweeted.
The Bucs already have used the franchise player tag on receiver Chris Godwin, who is recovering from a torn ACL.
“Well, I guess I better order some more baby powder,” Jensen tweeted. “LFG!!!!!!”
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