Curran: Gronk has come out unscathed
The reason Rob Gronkowski's return from injury has been delayed is concern over the stability of the Patriots tight end's surgically-repaired right forearm, WEEI.com reported Thursday night.
According to the WEEI.com report, "multiple sources with direct knowledge of the surgery on that arm" say the arm would have healed properly after it was broken last November with no surgery necessary, but the Patriots and Gronkowski, trying to speed his return for the playoffs late last season, decided to have surgery to insert a pin in the forearm. That surgery was performed by Patriots doctor Thomas Gill.
Gronkowski re-injured the arm in a playoff game against Houston and hasn't played since. A source told WEEI.com there is "serious concern" about the integrity of the bone where the pin was placed and the surrounding nerves. An abscess and infection developed in the arm, resulting in three more surgeries on the arm in the offseason.
According to the WEEI report, Gronkowski’s family and representatives were made aware of the issues in the arm and advised the tight end to hold off on playing until it could be determined that the bone in his right arm had fully healed. This led to noted orthopedic surgeon Dr. James Andrews being brought in to sign off on whether Gronkowski is indeed ready to play, taking the decision out of the hands of the Patriots, Gronkowski and Dr. Gill.
Pro Football Talk reported earlier this week that Gronkowski had been cleared to play this Sunday against the Saints at Gillette Stadium.
Gronkowski was not willing to confirm that after practice Thursday.
"Basically nothing new," he told reporters. "Just working hard every week, working hard out at practice. Nothing's changed. We're day by day, like we've been from the very beginning. It's all about the New England Patriots versus the New Orleans Saints this weekend. It's gonna be exciting, and they've got a good team."