Bucs TE Cameron Brate 'good to go' after back injury

TAMPA, Fla. -- The back injury that forced Tampa Bay Buccaneers tight end Cameron Brate to miss the 2016 season finale shouldn't prevent him from participating in the team's offseason program, his agent said Tuesday.

Joe Linta confirmed Brate suffered a small fracture in the transverse process of his spine, but that he's "good to go" now.

"Cam feels great and looks forward to being 100 percent for the start of the offseason in April," Linta said.

Brate, 25, suffered the injury late in the third quarter of a Week 16 game against the New Orleans Saints and did not return. Earlier in the game, he caught his eighth touchdown pass, tying the Bucs' single-season record for tight ends set by Jimmie Giles in 1985.

Brate was placed on injured reserve the next week.

An undrafted free agent out of Harvard in 2014, Brate enjoyed a breakout season in 2016, emerging as a starter and a favorite target for quarterback Jameis Winston. Brate's 57 catches for 660 yards were second-most on the team, behind Pro Bowl wide receiver Mike Evans.

Linta also confirmed that Brate signed his exclusive rights free-agent deal with the Bucs, which will keep him in Tampa for at least another year.

Brate is one of six exclusive rights free agents for the Bucs, along with cornerback Jude Adjei-Barimah, linebacker Adarius Glanton, wide receiver Adam Humphries, defensive end Howard Jones and wide receiver Freddie Martino.