Gronkowski was non-factor in Patriots’ Super Bowl loss

Reuters

Aside from Peyton Manning’s speculated future whereabouts and health, Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski’s high left ankle sprain was the Super Bowl’s biggest story during the week leading up to Sunday’s game.

And the injury rendered Gronkowski a non-factor as New England fell to New York 21-17.

Struggling to create separation in the passing game and on the field for only one snap on New England’s final drive, Gronkowski was targeted by Tom Brady just three times in four quarters. One of the throws was intercepted by Giants linebacker Chase Blackburn. Gronkowski secured two passes for 26 yards, but there was a reason Brady threw to him so infrequently. Gronk wasn’t healthy.

The Patriots got a big contribution from fellow tight end Aaron Hernandez, who caught a team-high eight passes for 67 yards and a touchdown. But New England’s offense clearly missed its most dynamic, physically dominant playmaker.

Gronkowski did have a chance to come down with Brady’s Hail Mary attempt at the end of regulation after the ball popped into the air, bouncing off a defender. He just couldn’t dive or reach far enough.

And so in a disappointing fashion did Gronkowski’s historical season end. Gronkowski set NFL records for touchdowns (17) and receiving yards (1,327) at his position, establishing himself as the best all-around tight end in football.

22 responses to “Gronkowski was non-factor in Patriots’ Super Bowl loss

  1. Yes, why don’t we admit that the Patriots could have won this game if Gronkowski was healthy (would have still been close, though). The Giants got so many breaks on their way to the Super Bowl. This is something everybody has to admit.

  2. reddskeletor says: Feb 5, 2012 10:13 PM

    Yes, why don’t we admit that the Patriots could have won this game if Gronkowski was healthy (would have still been close, though). The Giants got so many breaks on their way to the Super Bowl. This is something everybody has to admit.
    ——————————————
    Sure the Giants got a few breaks, but they fought all season long and played GREAT against top competition. They really hit their stride once the team came together and got healthy.

    The Pats offense really cooled off against top defenses and they had no business winning last week if you want to talk about catching breaks.

  3. He looked like he was less than 50% but give him credit for even playing . He’s a beast and will be back.

  4. And the Patriots didn’t have any breaks?

    1. Denver upset Steelers, Pats get an awful Broncos team in 2nd round
    2. Lee Evans drops TD pass
    3. Cundiff misses easy FG
    4. Horrible holding call stopped Giants scoring drive
    5. Horrible no call on PI, stopping another NY drive.

    Patriots beat 1 team with a winning record all year. Giants beat 4 in the playoffs.

  5. Hmmmm….wasn’t Gronk there the first time the Giants beat them? At home?

    Pats fans love excuses.

  6. As a Giants fan all my life, I worried about facing Gronk. MIGHT have been different if he were healthy, but that’s why its a team game and the BEST TEAM WON!!!!

  7. As a Steelers fan, I know how bad high ankle sprains such.

    Might have been a different game with a healthy Gronk, but injuries are part of the game. The Giants lost 2 of their TEs, as well.

  8. Gronkowski being slowed wasnt why the Patriots lost this game. The Giants were the better all around team. Eli Manning has three really good WR’s to throw the ball to. The Patriots secondary is crap. This was a bad matchup for them and everyone should have known that. With or without Gronkowski the PAtriots in my eyes were the underdogs coming into this game.

    Im not a fan of either team. Im just calling it as it is. The Patriot offense couldnt keep masking how bad their defense is. Once they faced an elite team I knew they would be exposed

  9. reddskeletor says:
    Feb 5, 2012 10:13 PM
    Yes, why don’t we admit that the Patriots could have won this game if Gronkowski was healthy (would have still been close, though). The Giants got so many breaks on their way to the Super Bowl. This is something everybody has to admit.
    ——————————————————–
    Patriots fans can have a healthy Gronkowski. Give us back Terrell Thomas, Jonathon Goff, Kevin Boothe (starting LT), both TEs we lost during the game…

    Don’t want to hear any team complain about an injury. Not when the Giants LED THE LEAGUE in games missed by starters this year. Belicheck had 2 weeks to make other plans. It’s not like Gronk got that sprain on the first play of the game.

  10. Why throw the caveat “all-around” in there? he’s far and away the best TE in the game right now.

    He can produce like jimmy graham. He can block like Bear Pascoe.

    For all the chirping about the pats being at the end of an era, if brady/belichick hang it up in 3-5 years this young nucleus is a good team that someone will come into.

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