New England Patriots All Pro tight end Rob Gronkowski was not at practice today, for the second time this week. Gronkowski has missed the team's full speed and full pads workout on Tuesday and was not available for the team's in-stadium Thursday practice to replicate game conditions. Gronkowski is on the injury report with a knee problem.
That's fine. That's exactly what the Patriots want. That's exactly what everyone wanted.
Remember all of the calls to put Gronkowski in bubble wrap? The Patriots can't win without Gronk! and Why is Gronk out there? He can't get hurt! sort of comments?
Well, you've gotten your wishes. There's no need for Gronkowski to be out on the field going at full speed, or on the wet and snowy stadium turf. That exposes him to greater risk than is necessary, while also letting the tight end work out on making sure the knee injury he suffered against the Denver Broncos is as healthy as possible.
Multiple reporters say that the tight end's availability for Saturday is not in jeopardy. He's sidelined for his own safety, and for the Super Bowl hopes of the Patriots.