The Tampa Bay Buccaneers potentially lost starting center Ryan Jensen for the season on Thursday, leaving a massive hole at one of the most important positions on an NFL offense.

And, what really stings is Jensen’s value goes further than just his play on the field. He’s a tone-setter, a disruptor, an annoyance for the opposition. He is one of the most intense, physical players in the NFL and his teammates not embrace every bit of it, but they even adopt those traits to a certain extent, themselves.

In other words: Jensen will practically be impossible to replace.

But, that doesn’t mean the Buccaneers are completely screwed. They have second-year player Robert Hainsey on the roster and there’s one or two other players who have center experience.

Super Bowl expectations and the presence of Tom Brady, though, completely change the dynamic on an in-house option, however.

It would be wise for the Buccaneers to look for help outside the confines of the AdventHealth Training Center.

According to NFL Network‘s Mike Garafolo, that exact option is being discussed by the Buccaneers. And the topic of those discussions is veteran center J.C. Tretter, who is easily the best option out there.

“The Buccaneers are bracing for the worst,” Garafolo said on the most recent episode of NFL Network’s NFL Total Access. “Now, they’re going to hold out hope that over the next couple of days, once the swelling goes down, they do some further tests, there’s some kind of silver lining, here. But, the expectation is that it’s going to be a season-ending injury for Jensen.

“… It look like it’s going to have to be internal options, plus maybe a veteran option. J.C. Tretter, the former Browns center, is still available right now. That’s not a bad option to have, right now. My understanding is it’s being discussed by the Buccaneers. We’ll see if Tretter is there, at least on a visit in short order, very soon.”

Hold the phone on the idea of Tretter to the Buccaneers?

Per Scott Reynolds of Pewter Report, the Buccaneers aren’t expected to pursue Tretter.

Reynolds has covered the Buccaneers for over 25 years, now, and is one of the most respected Buccaneers reporters out there. He is well connected, very credible, and has been at the forefront of several reports in the past.

In other words: there is plenty of reason to believe the Buccaneers aren’t interested in Tretter.

It makes a bit of sense, too. While the Buccaneers are in the middle of a Super Bowl run, they do have the aforementioned Hainsey on the roster, who was a third round pick. So, he’s expected to step up and provide quality play at some point in his career.

“We took Robert [Hainsey] in the third round for a reason because we saw a lot of potential in him,” Buccaneers GM Jason Licht told reporters Thursday. “… We’ve liked everything – the impression of Robert since we’ve drafted him, since the offseason last year. And we have faith in him.”

The best-case scenario is Jensen grows a new knee and simply replaces the one that was just injured, but we all know that’s not going to happen.

So, until the Buccaneers receive more concrete updates, fans will be left to their imaginations, for the time being.

Featured image via Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports