Gronkowski 'jittery' with excitement for Week 1

Gronkowski 'jittery' with excitement for Week 1
September 2, 2012, 4:42 pm
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FOXBORO -- Each player interview in the Patriots locker room Sunday morning got a preface. It's like there's an unwritten rule that those who'd been felled by Friday's roster cutdown had to first be acknowledged before moving on.
Rob Gronkowski was no exception.
"That shows the business side of the NFL and it's always tough to see your friends go," he said. "Your friends, people that are your mentors, guys that you look up to -- it's tough seeing them go. It's part of the business, but at the same time you wish them luck and you hope that everything works out for everyone that you see go. It's definitely a tough time."
But there's not a lot of time to dwell. This is Week 1, after all.
"It's kind of like last week now, but just focused on the game now that's coming up, Tennessee. Just going to be preparing hard, mentally, physically and getting ready."
The Patriots fly out to visit the Titans this weekend. Gronkowski said he's jittery with excitement to get things kicked off.
But of course. He not only has to answer for his own 2011 season -- the best statistical year for a tight end in NFL history -- he has to do it on a surgically repaired ankle.
Gronkowski believes he's on pace.
"That's what our whole training camp, always out there practice, getting ready. It's up to the coaches how much we play during the preseason games, but I feel that practice-wise, that's where it starts. And continuing from all of camp, practicing all of camp, and going into this week, all the reps we'll be getting this week, a couple practices to get prepared. Definitely feel prepared, hopefully throughout this week too. Get some good physical and mental preparation in to be ready."
Luckily, the tight end is working with Tom Brady and one of the league's most high-powered offenses.
"What I notice about the system is that we're always just trying to get better. Every single week, win or loss, you just want to improve and get better in the areas that you weren't doing so good at. Practice-wise, going back and looking at the film from the practice day before.
"You want to go out on the field and improve what you did wrong. And what you did right, you want to make sure that you're staying up to date, doing those things right, from there on out, every single practice. So basically, it's go time and we have to go out there and practice hard every week, keep the offense in rhythm."
There's no stopping -- as he and the rest of the whittled-down team are currently well aware.