The surgery was performed by Dr. Robert Watkins, who also performed back surgery on New York Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul at Marina Del Ray Hospital in California recently. Like Gronkowski, Pierre-Paul’s timetable is set for 12 weeks of recovery.
The Amherst, N.Y. native caught 55 passes for 790 yards and 11 touchdowns last season. Despite steady production in the regular season, injuries hampered Gronkowski in postseason play. He did not catch any passes, and was ineffective.
He played for the Arizona Wildcats for two seasons, and his best one came in 2008. That year, he caught 47 passes for 672 yards and 10 touchdowns. He also averaged an astounding 14.3 yards per catch; however that was down slightly from his mark of 18.8 set in 2007.
There is no doubt that the Patriots’ will need the offensive production that he brings to the table, especially now that the Denver Broncos have bolstered their offense with the addition of wide receiver Wes Welker. 12 weeks from now would be September 10, two days after their contest against the Buffalo Bills and two days prior to their showdown with the rival New York Jets, two important games in New England’s schedule.
Whenever Gronkowski gets back, that will be a big boost for a New England offense that relies heavily on the tight end. Hopefully for the Patriots, his absence will not leave too big a void.