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Buccaneers Could Get Massive Boost Before Playoffs

TAMPA, FL - JANUARY 16: Tampa Bay Buccaneers helmet sits on the field during the game between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on January 16, 2022 at  Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, FL. (Photo by Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

TAMPA, FL - JANUARY 16: Tampa Bay Buccaneers helmet sits on the field during the game between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on January 16, 2022 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, FL. (Photo by Andy Lewis/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers can clinch the playoffs this very week if they knock off the Carolina Panthers. Should they reach the postseason, they'll have a big boost waiting for them in the Wildcard Round.

On Wednesday, the Buccaneers announced that Pro Bowl center Ryan Jensen has been designated to return from injured reserve. The team now has a 21-day window to bring him back to resume practicing. 

Jensen has been out for the entire season with a knee injury. He had previously started every game and missed only a handful of snaps in the previous five years between the Buccaneers and Baltimore Ravens.

Last year really saw Jensen rise to prominence as he made the Pro Bowl for the first time in his career. He was one of three Buccaneers offensive linemen to earn the honor as the team went 13-4 and won the NFC South division title for the first time since 2007.

The timing of Ryan Jensen's impending return couldn't be better. Despite their recent struggles, the Buccaneers are slowly backing into the playoffs and get the Panthers and Atlanta Falcons to finish the season. 

If they do secure a playoff berth, they'll get a home game in the first round of the playoffs and will most likely face either the Dallas Cowboys or the Philadelphia Eagles. 

With the offense scoring over 23 points only once this season, any addition will be a welcome one this late in the season.

Will Ryan Jensen be an impact player for the Buccaneers down the stretch?