Patriots

Rob Gronkowski listed as doubtful for Sunday’s Buccaneers-Patriots game with rib injury

Gronkowski returned to practice Friday after missing the first two practices this week.

Harry How
Rob Gronkowski missed a chunk of Sunday's Tampa Bay loss to the Rams after taking a big shot to the ribs during the third quarter. Harry How

While most eyes have been focused on the return of Tom Brady to Foxborough on Sunday, another all-time great’s return has been in question over the last couple days.

Despite returning to practice on Friday, Rob Gronkowski is listed as doubtful to play in Sunday’s Buccaneers-Patriots game due to a rib injury.

Gronkowski was held out of practice earlier in the week because of the injury suffered last Sunday against the Rams. While Gronkowski was taken out of the game after suffering the injury, he did eventually return. X-rays on his ribs came back negative, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Monday.

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Gronkowski’s had a strong start to his second year in Tampa. Through three games, Gronkowski has 16 receptions for 184 yards plus four receiving touchdowns, the most among tight ends across the league.

Buccaneers defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul also returned to practice on Friday and is questionable for Sunday’s game. Pierre-Paul’s dealt with a shoulder injury that kept him out of last Sunday’s game against the Rams.

Running back Giovani Bernard and starting cornerback Jamel Dean have been ruled out with knee injuries. Cornerback Richard Sherman, who signed with the Buccaneers earlier in the week, is expected to play, head coach Bruce Arians told reporters on Friday.

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