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Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady will undoubtedly be missing one of is own key protectors after center Ryan Jensen was carted off the field with a left knee injury during Thursday’s practice.
While Brady is confident in second-year center Robert Hainsey, he admitted that the team is feeling the consequences of Jensen’s absence.
“Hes worked very difficult,” Brady said of Hainsey, per Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times. “Obviously, many people are heartbroken using what happened to Ryan, so that it will take a while. But [Hainsey] must step in to the job and execute a congrats.”
Tampa Bay head coach Todd Bowles told reporters the other day that Jensen is likely to miss “months” with the unspecified injury. The 10-year veteran is undergoing further evaluation on Monday to find out a timetable for his recovery.
A third-round choose of Notre Dame this past year, Hainsey appeared in nine games as a rookie. It’ll be difficult to displace Jensen, who was simply selected to the Pro Bowl in 2021, but Brady believes Hainsey is with the capacity of proving himself.
“He worked hard this past year [and] really gained the trust of lots of people. He’s surely got to go earn it,” Brady said. “Like most of us, it’s not everything you did in the offseason, it’s how good of a football player are you currently? It’s to be determined for all those.”
Brady, who turns 45 on Wednesday, is back for a 23rd season as he hopes to lead Tampa Bay to another Super Bowl in 3 years. The Bucs added a couple of veteran weapons for Brady in wideout Julio Jones and tight end Kyle Rudolph. However, Jensen’s injury has caused Brady to temper expectations because he knows things can transform before the Sept. 11 season opener contrary to the Dallas Cowboys.
“Nobody knows what the team will appear to be,” Brady said. “You imagine you’ve got a center, and he gets injured. The team differs in a single day. So its very long time between now and the initial game.”