Aaron Hernandez returns to practice for Patriots


They might not be back to full strength, but the Patriots are at least getting closer to having a full complement of tight ends again.

According to Mike Rodak of ESPNBoston.com, tight end Aaron Hernandez returned to practice Thursday for the first time since his ankle injury on Sept. 16.

Hernandez has missed the last two games, and since the Patriots scored 82 points in those, it’s hard to say his absence crippled them. But his versatility in the passing game gives them options they can use (even if it cuts into some of Wes Welker’s work).

Fellow tight ends Rob Gronkowski (hip) and Michael Hoomanawanui (concussion) returned to practice Thursday as well after missing Wednesday.

Missing Thursday’s work were cornerback Ras-I Dowling, safety Steve Gregory and receiver Julian Edelman.

27 responses to “Aaron Hernandez returns to practice for Patriots

  1. My guess is that Hernandez sits out this week and then plays a scaled back amount of snaps against the Seahawks before returning to his full time role the week after that against the Jets.

    Good to see that it wasn’t a severe injury though.

  2. Did Michael Hoomanawanui get concussed from trying to say his name?

    I think I just strained a lat trying to type it.

  3. I’ll give Hernandez two weeks before he has some other ailment. He’s the new Kellen Winslow.

  4. This is great news. When the injury happened it looked like it could have been a season ender. When diagnosed as a high ankle sprain, I thought we were looking at 8 weeks min. Good to see him heal quickly and close to being back on the field !

    Haven’t heard anything about Edelman’s injury except it being a hand. My guess is he might have broken it but I hope my guess is wrong.

    Time to start stringing the wins together and get ready to win the AFCE and push for New Orleans..

  5. Dowling is healthy.

    He left the team to be with his family because his grandmother passed away, according to Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald

  6. There may be no “I” in team but there sure is one in Ras-I.

    #best name in the NFL (did I hashtag correctly?)

  7. Thank goodness. With a talented TE like Hernandez out, I was really worried the Patriots didn’t have anyone else at that position who would afford them a fair shot at winning some games.

  8. BIG surprise to see Ras-I “glass bones” Dowling on the injured list – WASTE OF A PICK! They knew this guy had medical issues and still took him at the top of round two, I’m still steaming about this pick!

  9. I can’t imagine Hernandez did too much in practice with a high ankle sprain suffered 2 weeks ago.

    If he’s anywhere near to coming back that’s amazing – and very bad news for opposing teams – though even then you’d have to think his speed and cutting ability would be limited for quite some time.

    Since he’s not going on IR it’s worthwhile to keep opposing Ds guessing what they might have to contend with I guess

  10. Bills fans still crying about “cheap shots”? I guess after Spikes forced both your backs to fumble, he’s probably not your favorite player. Bet Chandler keeps his head on a swivel when the Bills come to Foxboro, though.

    If Hernandez comes back strong and the running game looks anything like last week, this Patriots offense could be nearly as dangerous as the 2007 version. With two tight ends who can catch and block, there’s just no way for defenses to overplay the run or the pass without getting exposed.

  11. been keeping hernandez on my bench,only used him week one.hope he is healthy enough next week so i can start him again.

  12. citnetter says:Oct 4, 2012 2:39 PM

    I’ll give Hernandez two weeks before he has some other ailment. He’s the new Kellen Winslow.


    Really? Prior to this year Hernandez has missed a total of 4 games. I would venture to bet that BB held him out of those couple games to avoid injury. Yeah, new Winslow.

  13. FORGET THIS MESS. Better not Take Welker out of the offense like he did the first 2 weeks. It cost me 2 losses by only a couple pts in fantasy football.. lol Hope Hernandez is good.. Hes a nightmare!

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