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Rob Gronkowski Suffers Setback

Rick Stewart

The Boston Herald reports Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski has suffered a setback recovering from an arm he broke twice during the 2012 season.

According to multiple sources familiar with the situation, tight end Rob Gronkowski has been battling a stubborn infection in the area around where a second metal plate was installed to repair his broken left forearm and his readiness for the season is in jeopardy.


Doctors treating Gronkowski will have to go back into the arm again to remove the plate and install a new one, but if they find more infected tissue, they would be unable to install the plate at that time. That would require another surgical procedure after the tissue around the injury is clear of infection and, sources confirmed, that would not give Gronkowski the required 10 weeks healing time to be ready for the season opener in September.

Depending on whether the Jets play the Patriots early in the 2013 season, this situation bears watching. Gronkowski is an impossible matchup. In just 11 games last year, he still had 55 catches, 790 yards, and 11 touchdowns. The New England offense will always be potent as long as Tom Brady is taking the snaps and throwing the passes, but it does lose a dimension if Gronkowski isn't there to assert his physical dominance.