An optional team practice complete with high energy and high humidity ruled the fields at One Buc Place on Thursday.
New Tampa Bay Buccaneers center Ryan Jensen is not difficult to spot. The man wearing number 66 has bright red hair and he is a monster on the line of scrimmage.
“I am kind of a scrapper on the field,” said Jensen.
The Buccaneers signed Jenson in the offseason. He agreed to a four year, $42 million deal with $22 million guaranteed, making him the highest paid center in the league.
The former Baltimore Raven admits the team asked him to bring his feisty style of play with him to the Sunshine State.
“That is one thing they wanted me to do,” said Jensen. “Kind of push that a little bit more and, granted, we are in OTAs right now but I can tell the guys’ mentalities are starting to get more to that vinegar type attitude.”
Ali Marpet returns to the guard position with Jensen at center. It is a smooth transition according to Jensen.
“He is always in his playbook,” said Jensen. “He has helped me a lot actually learning the new playbook and it has been really nice.”
Aside from mastering their position, these players also need to master the art of teamwork. Jensen says it can be helped by time.
“We are starting to mesh better and communication is big, in the way we communicate with each other, and having a couple new pieces in there it makes it a little tough but we are getting there,” says Jensen.
The time they spend together off the field is helpful too.
“The chemistry is very big on the offensive line and we are really starting to click,” said Jensen. “We are actually having an offensive line BBQ on Friday and I have a couple of briskets I am throwing on so it is going to be good.”