With Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski back at practice after multiple offseason surgeries (several to his arm, one to his back), it’s unclear when he’ll be able to play. By not leaving him on the Physically Unable to Perform list, which would have sidelined Gronkowski for at least the first six weeks of the season, the Pats have signaled he’ll be back at some point before then.
At this point, it’s simply not clear when that will be. Per a league source, it’s unlikely Gronkowski will play in Week One at Buffalo or in Week Two, a short-week Thursday night encounter at home against the Jets. But it’s not completely out of the question that he’ll suit up in either of the first two games.
The earliest Gronkowski plays could be Week Three, when the Bucs bring their team (hopefully MRSA free) back to Foxborough.
For now, we’re told it’s impossible to know with certainty when he’ll be ready to go. The bigger concern, given his recent history, is whether he’ll be able to stay healthy, once he gets healthy.