Gronkowski is in a great state
QUINCY - Rob Gronkowski was succinct when asked about the status of his surgically repaired left ankle on Monday.
“Great!’’ he said at Granite Links Golf Club, where he and linebacker Rob Ninkovich were serving as co-hosts for the fourth annual Joe Andruzzi Foundation golf tournament.
The record-setting tight end did not take part in any of the Patriots’ organized team activities or mini-camp as he continued to rehab from February surgery to repair torn ligaments in his ankle, an injury suffered in the AFC Championship game.
Asked by a reporter if he’d be ready to go for training camp, he smiled and said, “I’m not telling you that.’’
Heading into his third season, Gronkowski recently signed a contract extension that has a maximum value of $54 million. Proving that the money hasn’t changed him, he pointed to two free meals and a free round of golf as the biggest perks of being co-host of Andruzzi’s event.
Looking uncomfortable when asked about his contract, Gronkowski said, “I’m just happy. Both sides are really happy. I love all my fans out there. It’s a great community, a great team.’’
Andruzzi spent five seasons with the Patriots and two with Cleveland before being diagnosed with an aggressive form of non-Hodgkins’ lymphoma in 2007. His foundation raises money for pediatric cancer research and also provides financial assistance to families of patients battling cancer.
Faulk wants in
Free agent running back Kevin Faulk reiterated that he would like to return to the Patriots for a 14th season, but the ball is in the team’s court.
“I’m being patient, still working out, but at the same time, doing what I have to do to maintain me and my family,’’ Faulk said before teeing off at the Andruzzi Foundation tournament.
Faulk tore his right ACL against the Jets in 2010 and began the 2011 season on the physically unable to perform list. He returned to the roster in late October and played in seven regular-season games, finishing with 17 carries and seven receptions, but has since acknowledged that he wasn’t at 100 percent physically.
The 36-year-old said he’s fully healthy now. However,Faulk said if New England does not bring him back, he will retire; he does not want to play for another team.
Honors for Kraft
Monday was a pretty big day for Robert Kraft: the Patriots’ owner learned that he will be inducted into the Columbia Athletics Hall of Fame and also is this year’s recipient of the Halas Award, presented by the Pro Football Writers of America.
Kraft, who earned a bachelor’s in history and economics from Columbia in 1963, earned two letters in football, first as a member of the freshman team, then as a part of the varsity lightweight team; an injury in his junior season ended his playing days. He is a trustee emeritus of his alma mater, having served two six-year terms on the board of trustees.
The Halas Award is given to “an NFL player, coach or staff member who overcomes the most adversity to succeed.’’ Kraft is the first member of the Patriots and first team owner to win the award.
Kraft was chosen for his dedication to the game and the league last spring and summer, when he was credited with helping to broker a labor agreement between the league and the NFL Players’ Association that ended the lockout.
When he was not dealing with the lockout and bargaining, Kraft was at the side of his wife, Myra, who was dying of cancer. She died July 20, 2011; five days later, the lockout ended.
Scaife, Ingersoll waived
The Patriots released veteran tight end Bo Scaife and offensive lineman Mike Ingersoll, a league source said. Scaife was signed June 7 but was clearly having conditioning problems during the team’s mini-camp; he did not play in a game in 2011. Ingersoll, signed June 11, was an undrafted rookie in 2011 who spent last December on Tampa Bay’s practice squad.