Coach Bruce Arians indicated Tuesday that Howard (Achilles) is "really close" to returning, James Palmer of NFL Network reports.

Howard played just four games last season due to injury and racked up 11 catches for 146 yards and a pair of touchdowns in his brief campaign. Even when Howard is back in a full capacity, he'll have to contend with Rob Gronkowski and Cameron Brate for snaps at a loaded tight end spot for the Bucs.

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