Rodgers is a minimum-salary-benefit player, so the Buccaneers cannot officially sign him until free agency begins Thursday at 4 p.m. ET.
No terms have been agreed upon, according to sources, but both sides have expressed a desire to reach a deal to secure Rodgers' return to Tampa Bay.
Rodgers signed with the Bucs in Week 2 last season, seeing action in 10 games with five starts. He had his first career 100-yard rushing performance while subbing for an injured Doug Martin in a Week 5 victory over Carolina on Monday Night Football. He followed that up with a 154-yard rushing performance against San Francisco.
Rodgers missed four games after suffering a foot injury in Week 8, and he finished the year with 560 rushing yards on 129 carries (4.34 yards per carry) and two touchdowns. He also caught 13 passes for 98 yards.
The Bucs' running back situation has been complicated by the uncertainty surrounding Martin, who left the team with one game remaining last year to begin serving a four-game suspension for a performance-enhancing drug violation and to enter a drug treatment program.
Martin returned to Tampa two weeks ago to meet with the team, a meeting both coach Dirk Koetter and general manager Jason Licht described as positive when they met with reporters at the NFL scouting combine last week.
Martin will remain in California to continue preparing for the offseason program, which begins in April. Koetter and Licht both emphasized that they do not have to make an immediate decision on Martin, who is still under contract for the next four seasons. But because Martin engaged in conduct detrimental to the team and was suspended, the Bucs are no longer on the hook for $7 million in guarantees.
Rodgers' impending signing does not preclude the Bucs from selecting a running back in this year's NFL draft, a class that the Bucs feel is very deep.