For New England Patriots star tight end Rob Gronkowski, most of the injury news is the status quo, meaning that he’s progressing along nicely but without any significant progress made yet. Arm surgeries plagued Gronk’s offseason last year, and he’s been busy rehabbing from an ACL and MCL tear this offseason after taking a vicious, season-ending hit to the knee from Cleveland Browns (now Denver Broncos) strong safety T.J. Ward at the end of last season. Gronkowski was so important to the Patriots offense as a pass-catcher, mis-match maker, and blocker that his injury pretty much signaled the end of the Patriots Super Bowl hopes; they had already suffered too many injuries.
ESPN Boston’s Mike Reiss caught up with Gronkowski at a Play60 event at Igo Elementary School this morning, and the Pats star dished out the latest information regarding his knee injury. While he stated that he isn’t ready to join the Patriots for OTAs, he once again stated only good things about his progress, “It’s coming along [well]. Just rehabbing every day, improving every single week, and that’s all I can ask for.”
“It’s way different stuff, I just have to be patient and work hard and literally give it all I have every single day. All I can [do is let] the body heal and do what it does and hopefully when it comes down to it, I am ready to roll.”
I could see the Patriots giving Gronkowski more rest this year like they did last year, but his situation is better this time around, especially since he actually has time to rehab and practice. Gronkowski should be all-systems-go for the start of the season, but we should still take things bit-by-bit. Intriguing small-school UDFA TE Justin Jones is definitely worth watching closely this year, and hopefully he has more of an impact than Zach Sudfeld (I bought into him, too and still have hope) did as a rookie.