By Eric Schmidt

The New England Patriots saw dynamic TE Rob Grokowski return to the field for practice this week. Gronkowski broke his left arm on November 18 against the Indianapolis Colts and has not returned to the field since. The fact that he returned to practice this week is encouraging for the Patriots, who are thin at the receiver position and could use another offensive weapon.

Despite being listed as questionable on the team’s injury report, it’s not likely that Gronkowski returns to the field this week against the San Francisco 49ers. In fact, there really is no need to rush Gronkowski back on to the field except maybe in a limited role, prior to the playoffs. Next week the Patriots face the hapless Jacksonville Jaguars and finish the season with the Miami Dolphins. New England could have the second seed in the AFC secured and with nothing to really play for, why risk further injury?

Gronkowski has also been dealing with a hip injury this season, so the Patriots would be wise to rest him and make certain he’s 100% ready to go for the playoffs.

 

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