Rob Gronkowski expected to miss New England Patriots’ opener
Gronk had back surgery on June 18 to repair a herniated disk. The All-Pro tight end had the same surgery in 2009 while in college at Arizona, which led other teams to pass on him in the NFL Draft.
In addition to recovering from back surgery, Gronk has had four operations on his forearm in the past year. Gronk first broke his forearm while pass protecting on an extra point last season. He re-broke his forearm after returning to action weeks later. An additional surgery was required because of infection.
The Globe’s Volin wrote two weeks ago that the “most prudent” thing for the Patriots to do would be to place Gronk on the reserve/PUP list and have him miss the first six games of the season. We’ll see if they make such a move. We are recommending fantasy owners draft Patriots tight end Zach Sudfled in light of Gronk’s status.
The Patriots open up at Buffalo on Sept. 8 and host the New York Jets on Thursday Sept. 12. If Gronk is placed on the reserve/PUP list, he wouldn’t be able to play until Week 7 at the Jets on Oct. 20.