By Tom E. Curran
CSNNE.com Patriots Insider Follow @tomecurran
FOXBORO - Stephen Gostkowski's 2010 season ended on November 7 in Cleveland. It was after that game that the former Pro Bowler's right thigh hurt so much that he was sent for an MRI. The result -- his quad was torn away from the bone -- was the kind of news that makes a kicker's breath catch. "I've never been hurt from any sport before where I had to miss time," Gostkowski said Thursday at Gillette Stadium where he was attending a charity event. "Something so serious where it was my kicking leg -- I can't kick with another leg -- it was worrisome at first but I am doing well... I'm kicking just as well as I would this time of the year as I would any other year and I feel good about it." Gostkowski has been working outin Tennessee with Ravens long snapper Morgan Cox, a player whose 2010 season was cut short by a torn ACL. Gostkowski said the two have formed a nice rehab support system for each other. "Each week it keeps getting better and better and better," Gostkowski said. "I'm very happy with where I'm at right now. I'm just going to work hard to be ready by camp. It's good, it's encouraging. I've managed to stay positive throughout the whole process."Gostkowski sounds as if he's gone with the appropriate caution in coming back, despite not being able to see the Patriots training staff. "It's been a slow progression," he explained. "Like a pitcher playing toss, then he's playing long toss, then he's throwing off the mound, so it's been a slow progression over the last couple of months. Little baby steps. The fear of reinjuring or hurting myself while I (train) is completely out the window. It's just encouraging to feel better each week. As long as I don't overdo it and am smart about it (things should be fine) because we still have a long way to go until camp." On that front, Gostkowski doesn't sound like he's keeping himself actively in the loop. "I'm just itching to get back at it," he said. "Whenever this stuff resolves, it resolves and we'll be back and it'll be all normal again. I'm just going to wait until that happens and not worry about anything until it does."
By Tom E. Curran