FOXBORO - There's been a rash of sprained MCLs on the Patriots this season and Brandon Spikes is the latest to suffer one. The Patriots' middle linebacker went down in the third quarter of a game he was playing well in against the Giants. How long will Spikes be gone? Well, the injury is the same as fellow linebacker Jerod Mayo suffered in Oakland. Mayo missed the next two games and also sat out the bye week (like all his teammates) before returning against Pittsburgh. Mayo still seems to be laboring with the knee two games since his return. Aaron Hernandez, who also suffered an MCL sprain, missed two games. His explosiveness has also been reduced since coming back from the injury, which normally carries a 4 to 6-week convalesence. The Patriots play the Jets and Chiefs the next two weeks. With Mayo still not 100 percent, Spikes hurt and Gary Guyton leaving Sunday's game late as well, the Patriots are suddenly in deep linebacker trouble.
Rob Gronkowski plays the lead role in a music video that came out Wednesday. As could be expected, it’s funny and occasionally cringeworthy. Whatever. He’s the best tight end of all time.
The video, which is for 3LAU’s “On My Mind,” sees Gronkowski have a bunch of fantasies while talking to a woman at the bar. Here’s a scene-by-scene breakdown.
- In a bar, Gronkowski has a drink with a woman.
- In Gronkowski’s fantasy, he is washing a car with the aforementioned girl and seven others. At one point, Gronkowski notices one of the girl’s butts and breaks the fourth wall to let the audience know that he thinks it’s one heck of a butt. The license plate of the car, registered in California, reads “GRONK.”
- Gronkowski briefly snaps out of it, but is soon in another fantasy in which he is the serving platter for sushi being consumed by the now dress-wearing women. The girls and a man who is also there feed the sushi to Gronkowski and one another. The fantasy gets awry when the seemingly nice man dumps a lot of soy sauce on Gronkowski. He gets it in his face and everything.
- Gronkowski awakens from his fantasies to see the woman throw a drink in his face as she storms out of the bar. As Gronkowski goes after the girl, he trips and falls back into a new fantasy, which is set in an indoor trampoline park. This is NOT the trampoline park owned by Ty Law. I looked it up.
- Now in the trampoline park, Gronkowski, the girls and a few fellas have a pillow fight which also features confetti. In a moment of pure bliss, Gronkowski falls on his back and daydreams -- making this a fantasy within a fantasy -- but is awoken by someone sweeping up the bar and hitting him in the face with a broom.
- Gronkowski gets up and walks out, capping what seemingly was just a night where a guy went to a bar by himself then passed out on the floor.
There's one where he makes a one-handed catch and celebrates with his arms outstretched as he glides into the end zone. There's another where he leaves his feet to go up and over safety Devin McCourty to come down with a pass.
Judging by some of the pictures that have surfaced on Patriots.com of Rob Gronkowski participating in an OTA practice earlier this week, the All-Pro tight end seems to be feeling pretty good.
Gronkowski, who agreed to an incentive-laden contract restructure for the upcoming season, is returning to action after undergoing season-ending back surgery last year so there was some question as to just how prepared he'd be to participate in practices this spring and summer.
Again, judging by the photos, the answer is he's ready to ready to run routes on air and make contested catches against defenders.
Reporters will have an opportunity to watch the team practice on Thursday, the first workout open to members of the media, which will allow us to judge Gronkowski's mobility and his level of participation more fully.
Another takeaway from the photos on the team website is that Gronkowski was not required to wear a non-contact jersey during the session. Contact is not allowed during this phase of the offseason training program, but players returning from injury (and quarterbacks) will still wear red jerseys to inform their teammates they're not to be touched. For instance, Jonathan Freeny, who was placed on season-ending injured reserve about a month into last season, donned a red non-contact jersey in one image.