- For the actor, see Terry Crews.
|“||I'm Terry Jeffords, and when I put my mind to something, I do it.||”|
―Terry Jeffords in "The Oolong Slayer"
Lieutenant Terrence Vincent "Terry" Jeffords is a main character of the show. He is a linebacker of a man who's lost his nerve, not because he's a wimp, but because a year prior to the series, his wife Sharon had twin baby girls; Cagney and Lacey, and he can't imagine not seeing them grow up.
Terry had a rough childhood. He was overweight, was bullied, and had a cruel father. He had a joy in his early life, though: the books of D.C. Parlov. He viewed police officers as superheroes, which is why he joined the force, and was saved from bullies by one.
During his time as a field officer, his infamous nickname was "The Ebony Falcon". He has a third daughter called Ava who was born later on Thanksgiving 2015 after Sharon Jeffords goes into labor at the 99th Precinct.
He played linebacker at Syracuse.
Terry spent a year abroad in Tokyo in his junior year at college, where he briefly dated Chiaki, who broke his heart.
He doesn't get along very well with her brother-in-law Zeke, due to how badly Zeke treats him. The only time Zeke showed respect for Terry was out of sympathy when Zeke thought Holt was abusing his authority.
He had an addiction to food which got real bad, to the point where he broke a restaurant window because they were closed at 6:00. He got over it by re-booting his system (sticking his head in ice water) every time he felt for a food craving.
Before joining the 99th Precinct, he was a detective at the 65th precinct. There, he was mocked after he exclaimed that a cat was an accomplice to a burglary, and was helping a seemingly paralyzed (he was faking his disability) man, who turned out to be the burglar when Terry and Jake went back to the case twenty years later.
And prior to the show's events, he worked at the 18th precinct with Captain Holt, as a fat version of himself nicknamed as "Terry Titties." In 1995, he made Detective and started his first day at the 65th Precinct.
Terry is usually seen at his desk in a normal shirt, usually with a tie and suspenders. He is 6',3", and is 240 pounds. He is very muscular as he likes to work out whenever he can. Charles describes him as looking like 8 circles with suspenders.
During Chocolate Milk, Terry wants to have a vasectomy however he is prevented from doing so by his massive stature; the doctor didn't have enough anaesthesia for a man of his size.
Read full article on Terry Loves Yogurt
Several episodes contain a running gag involving Terry Jeffords' love for yogurt.
Terry often uses third person to describe his emotions.
In the earlier parts of the show, Terry repeatedly brought up his past obesity. This stopped in the later seasons, however, as it could've been seen as offensive.
Terry is caring, protective over the squad, and hardworking. He has a habit of referring to himself in the third person. When he had twin daughters, he freaked out and ended up afraid of getting himself hurt, but soon enough he showed himself to be a tough, heroic, fearsome man who would do anything to protect his squad. He fearlessly charged against an armed criminal to save Captain Holt's life, twice, and when Jake, Charles, and Gina were trapped in a store with terrorists breaking in, Terry defied orders in order to prevent them from being endangered - he openly defied Detective Pembroke to prevent him from endangering his friends. Holt sees potential in Terry to be a captain, and recognises him as a great leader and a compassionate person.
Terry is a good cop and a serious person, but he is also extremely smooth and everyone in his precinct really likes him - he is almost as much of a father figure to some detectives as Holt is. Terry often jumps at the chance to console or to otherwise help a detective in a personal situation, even if he doesn't understand such situations from personal experiences: he consoled Rosa after the departure of Adrian Pimento, and drank with Jake when he realized that them solving the unsolvable case was all about him getting over Amy.  He shows amazing amounts of tolerance with his fellow detectives: he can speak on reasonable terms with an enraged Rosa, a despondent Charles, and having to contend repeatedly with the incompetent Hitchcock and Scully.
Terry is capable of a ferocious temper, almost as ferocious as Rosa's (which is really saying something). He reacts furiously when Jake tries to exclude him from his first case back in the field, when the Vulture disregards the lives of his colleagues during a hostage situation, and when he is perceived as fat by some people. He is capable of incredible feats of strength when riled, such as ripping a thick book in half with both hands, slamming a door so hard that the window, and the interior of the room, completely falls apart, and even lifting the back end of a car off the ground with both hands for an extended amount of time.
Terry was the precinct's champion marksman.
- Jeffords: Terry loves yogurt
- Jeffords: Holt was right. I've been so worried about my own kids I forgot about my stupid grown-up kids.
- Peralta: That's insulting.
- Jeffords: I need to eat 10,000 calories a day to maintain muscle mass!
- Jeffords: Hey, ball. If Savant was doing anything to harm this precinct, would I destroy him? (With one hand, Terry reflexively, angrily crushes the ball, shocking everyone in the room) Answer: Uncertain. Try again!
- Jeffords: Sir, there's been a jailbreak and the Mafia's at it again.
- Jeffords: Terry's shoulders weren't built for tight spaces. It's Bonk City in here!
Awards and Decoration
American Flag Breast Bar
May be worn by any NYPD Police Officer.
Commendation—Integrity Breast Bar
Commendation—Integrity is awarded for Grave personal danger in the performance of duty, OR A highly creditable, unusual police accomplishment.
Unit Citation Breast Bar
It is awarded to a specific unit or precinct for outstanding accomplishments.
World Trade Center Breast Bar
Once only reserved to be worn by any NYPD Police Officer who was in active service during, or worked details related to the follow up on, the September 11 attacks, it has been updated to allow any NYPD Police Officer, at their discretion, to wear the bar in honor and remembrance.
- Terry is left-handed.
- Terry used to be overweight.
- Terry played football for Syracuse as a linebacker.
- Terry often refers to himself in third-person.
- His favorite yogurt flavor was mango. It has since been discontinued.
- His once-a-week treat is full fat Greek yogurt with a touch of honey.
- Terry loves love, foreign films, kreplach, walls, lavender, Frasier, suspenders, sports bloopers, and maintaining a professional work environment; besides yogurt.
- Terry is known to be an excellent illustrator and painter. This was shown in M.E. Time when he filled in for the sick sketch artist and helped Amy catch the purse-snatcher.
- Terry has written a book for his children, Madam Secretary fanfiction (the show leaves Terry wanting more), and also a fantasy novel, though he doesn't have serious aspirations of becoming a professional writer.
- He likes foreign films, such as "Breathless" which he considers to be Francois Truffaut's film since he is the writer. He gets in a debate with a man at Captain Holt's party who believes it to be Jean-Luc Godard's film.
- Terry is a huge fan of the "Skyfire Cycle" franchise by DC Parlov. Discovering Parlov is a womanizing jerk has not lessened his love for the books.
- Terry named his right breast "Eugene".
- He loves kreplach. 
- Terry watches a lot of Grey's Anatomy, a medical drama TV show by ABC.
- He writes fanfiction.
- He lived in Tokyo for a while in his youth. During that time, his heart was broken by a girl he loved, who only wanted a fling. Also in Tokyo, he did a modelling job.
- According to Boyle, Terry's grandmother fell ill and died during the events of Safe House.