TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Buccaneers fans have been patiently waiting to see center Ryan Jensen back in action, but unfortunately, that day may never come.

During the third quarter of the Bucs’ preseason finale, general manager Jason Licht announced Jensen would be placed on the injured reserve list, ending his 2023 season before it even started.

Jensen, who played during Tampa Bay’s Wild Card game against the Dallas Cowboys last season, has not fully recovered from the “significant knee injury” he suffered during training camp last year. The center tore ACL, MCL, PCL, and meniscus, and he fractured his tibial head and cartilage on July 28, 2022.

According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, Jensen’s injury is so significant that the 32-year-old “likely had played his last down in the NFL.” He added that Jensen elected not to have surgery following the Bucs’ loss against the Cowboys.

Rapoport said that Jan. 16 playoff game was “almost certainly his last game.”

After announcing Jensen’s injury status, Licht said that although the Pro Bowl center won’t be on the field, he’ll join the team on the sidelines.

While head coach Todd Bowles said the decision to place Jensen on injured reserve was made in the last few days, the center said it was a heartbreaking decision to come to.

“We did everything we [could] to get him ready – he did everything he could to get ready. It wasn’t responding and at this point in time, under further evaluation from the doctors, we decided to put him on [Injured Reserve],” Bowles said.

“Obviously, news broke today about me getting put on [Injured Reserve]. It breaks my heart. There’s nothing more I want to do than be a part of this team,” Jensen said after Saturday’s game. “This organization has changed my life and unfortunately, my knee just wasn’t progressing in an upward, positive way.”

Jensen said he worked his “butt off” in the offseason, but his knee wasn’t doing what it needed to do.

“I fought my butt off. I put more work in this offseason than I’ve done in probably my entire career. It just wasn’t responding how it needed to respond and go out there and play at a high level. It sucks, but I know I want to be around this team and help out the young guys and mentor the guys on the line and do whatever I can do to be a part of this team and help this team win football games.”

Tampa Bay will look to Robert Hainsey and Nick Leverett as replacements for Jensen.