During locker room interviews yesterday, someone asked Rob Gronkowski how difficult it was to watch his two brothers getting cut from Denver and Dallas over the weekend (Chris Gronkowski, a fullback, was quickly claimed by the Colts). I came this close to following up by asking if he could envision his other brother, Dan Gronkowski (a tight end) coming to New England. But then I figured, what are the odds?
Pretty good, apparently. This afternoon, the brothers Gronk began tweeting that Dan, formerly with Denver, had been signed by New England. He's not practice squad eligible, so, someone already on the 53-man roster would have to go. Sounds like it's cornerback Darius Butler, who also went to Twitter to inform his followers that his time with the Patriots was over.
Then just a short time ago, reports began surfacing that New England had picked up linebacker A.J. Edds, a Dolphins castoff. So, now, someone else, presumably, will have to exit the Patriots roster to make room. No official word yet on any of these moves by the club, however.
My first reaction is that rookie linebacker Jeff Tarpinian could be the odd man out, because I'm still mystified that this kid, who barely did anything noticeable in preseason, made the squad in the first place. Again, nothing in the way of confirmation from the front office yet, so, all this remains speculation as of 6:30 p.m. Tuesday.
However, once everything is confirmed, there's a lot to absorb here. The Patriots clearly needed at least one other tight end on the roster, so, I'm not at all surprised by the new Gronk addition. But Butler's departure would leave the Patriots already-thin cornerback position even more vulnerable. Couple that with the questions at safety and the New England secondary is hanging on by a thread entering the 2011 season.
I remember studying Edds (6-3, 246) during the pre-draft process a year ago and thought he looked like a Patriots kind of player. He's essentially a rookie again this year after missing the 2010 season with a right knee injury.
As always, we'd love your feedback on the latest moves. Share your thoughts with us with comments below.
UPDATE … 9:55 a.m., Wednesday
Well, the Tarpinian Devil lives another day. It was Gerard Warren, versatile veteran d-lineman, who was axed to make room for Edds. Butler was, in fact, the other casualty, and Dan Gronkowski has been officially signed.