Updates from Tuesday, Sept 2
Bill Belichick then says "with all due respect to Rob", team will go through week and then make a decision on his status.— Mike Reiss (@MikeReiss) September 2, 2014
New England Patriots fans and fantasy owners of Rob Gronkowski can now rejoice. One of the best tight ends in the NFL has declared himself ready for Week 1 when his team travels to take on the Miami Dolphins.
Gronkowski spoke about being ready for the matchup, per Shalise Manza Young of The Boston Globe:
Gronk: "I'm ready to go. I'll be playing."— shalise manza young (@shalisemyoung) September 1, 2014
Phil Perry of CSN New England shared more comments from Gronkowski:
Gronkowski says he's playing Sunday. "It's gonna be an honor to be back out there with my teammates." pic.twitter.com/5E6INBnuz9— Phil Perry (@PhilAPerry) September 1, 2014
The tight end posted his own message on Twitter:
Hard work and dedication for the love of the game! It's that time again, it's go time! Super pumped! #PatsNation— Rob Gronkowski (@RobGronkowski) September 1, 2014
Last season, Gronkowski played in just seven contests, compiling 39 receptions for 592 yards and four touchdowns, before a torn ACL and MCL ended his campaign in early December.
While the news about Gronk's readiness is undoubtedly positive for the Patriots and fantasy owners, he might not play every snap against the Dolphins. Doug Kyed of NESN shared another comment from the stud tight end:
Gronk says he doesn't expect to play every snap. "Getting my feet wet."— Doug Kyed (@DougKyedNESN) September 1, 2014
Though that potential snap-count limitation might worry fantasy owners, there should be little hesitation to plug Gronk into your lineups. Josh Moore of 4for4.com notes he will likely be in for crucial plays:
I wouldn’t worry about Gronk’s snap count. The snaps he plays will be the ones you want him playing on. #fantasyfootball— Josh Moore (@4for4_Josh) September 1, 2014
Gronkowski revealed how he feels heading into the matchup, via Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald:
Gronk: "I feel like I can be myself out there. ... I'll be playing like I always play."— Jeff Howe (@jeffphowe) September 1, 2014
Will Carroll of Bleacher Report also shares his thoughts on the news:
The "injury prone" Rob Gronkowski will have a nine month recovery from ACL reconstruction. We might need to redefine this term.— Will Carroll (@injuryexpert) September 1, 2014
With Gronk news, "it's as fast as Adrian Peterson" will be heard. No. AP may have been ready to play at 5-6 months. We'll never know.— Will Carroll (@injuryexpert) September 1, 2014
The announcement is a huge one for the Patriots, but the tight end expected to return for Week 1. Albert Breer of the NFL Network notes that Gronk simply reached his anticipated result:
Gronkowski will certainly be a huge weapon for the Patriots against Miami. With a young receiving corps around him, he is the clear No. 1 target for quarterback Tom Brady when he's on the field.
Though he has battled a variety of injuries in recent seasons, Gronk has frequently proven why he's considered one of the NFL's best tight ends. Even if he's not healthy enough to play every snap against the Dolphins, a monster performance could be in the cards this coming weekend.
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