NFL.com's Albert Breer is reporting that New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski will undergo yet another surgery, this time on his ailing back.
The surgery, to be performed be California spine specialist Dr. Robert Watkins, is expected to be conducted sometime in mid-June. Gronkowski had been dealing with his injured back for some time now, dating back to his playing days at University of Arizona, and is opting for surgery to help deal with it. Gronkowski recently had an MRI performed on a disc in his back last season and is unrelated to a procedure done in 2009.
Gronkowski is still rehabbing his surgically repaired forearm, so, Gronkowski can conceivably rehab both surgeries had the same time. Gronkowski isn't expected to be ready for camp starting in late July, but it is still possible to be ready for Week 1, if the surgery on his back goes smoothly.
Good news for Patriots fans is that Gronkowski's arm looks to be finally healing okay. Doctors discovered that there was no infection present in his surgically repaired forearm and looks to be out of the woods as far as his arm, but now his back makes things murky for Gronk and the Pats.
Former New York Giant Jake Ballard will look to fill the void left by Gronk for the time being and has looked pretty good so far at the OTAs. Ballard suffered a knee injury about 16 months ago, but you could hardly tell looking at him during the OTAs. Ballard, another big body, has good hands and is looking to make a difference as a blocker.