Patriots

Rob Gronkowski among missing players at Patriots’ first day of mandatory minicamp

Rob Gronkowski takes a breather during a game against Miami last October. Jim Rogash/Getty Images

The New England Patriots were missing several prominent players Tuesday on the first day of mandatory minicamp. Some players are still recovering from offseason surgeries: that explains the absences of Julian Edelman, LeGarrette Blount, Dion Lewis, Nate Solder, and Sebastian Vollmer.

One exception, however, was tight end Rob Gronkowski. The All-Pro tight end missed the Patriots’ first mandatory practice of minicamp, and if you’re wondering why, good luck finding out from Patriots head coach Bill Belichick.

“I don’t know,” Belichick said when asked if everyone reported to camp. “Whoever’s here is here.”

“There are a lot of players that weren’t on the field,” Belichick added, when asked specifically about Gronkowski’s absence. “They were doing other things.”

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The Patriots will hold two more practices in their mandatory minicamp this week, and one more practice next week before breaking for the rest of June and July.

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