FOXBOROUGH — Two Patriots tight ends are going in opposite directions healthwise.
Rob Gronkowski was taken off the injury report Friday after being limited by an ankle injury in Thursday’s practice. Jacob Hollister, however, was ruled out of Sunday night’s game because of a new injury to his chest.
Hollister had been dealing with a hamstring problem, but he was taken off the injury report before the Jaguars game in Week 2. In that game, Hollister caught all three of his targets for 35 yards, playing a career-high 23 percent of offensive snaps. Hollister was a full participant in practice Wednesday and Thursday and was not on the injury report before being ruled out.
Though any ailment to Gronkowski, the Patriots’ most explosive player, is potentially impactful, his injury never seemed serious. That he’s good to go makes a big difference for the offense, as Tom Brady said Friday.
“I think any time Rob’s out there playing hard, it’s such a big impact on our team,’’ Brady said. “When he’s not out there, particular plays, I mean, it’s just different.
“He’s one of the best players we have and he’s got to play like it and we all have to play like it if we want to be productive.’’
Hollister was the only Patriot ruled out, but defensive end Trey Flowers and safety Patrick Chung, both concussed, were listed as “doubtful’’ Friday.
According to Dr. David Chao, a former Chargers team doctor who contributes to the San Diego Union Tribune, only 2.5 percent of players who were listed as doubtful last season wound up active. That bodes poorly for anyone hoping to see Flowers and Chung in Detroit. Last season, three Patriots players were listed as “doubtful’’ for games and none of them played.
The Patriots were middle-of-the-pack when it came to playing “questionable’’ players. They played 64 percent (65 of 101) of the players they listed as “questionable’’ on the final injury report before a game.
This week, that designation belongs to right tackle Marcus Cannon (calf), cornerback Keion Crossen (hamstring), special teamer Nate Ebner (hip), wide receiver Josh Gordon (hamstring), and cornerback Eric Rowe (groin).
Along with Gronkowski, running back Sony Michel (ankle) and defensive end Deatrich Wise (finger) were removed from the injury report.