While it's not exactly earth-shattering news, NFL Network reported on Monday that Patriots are targeting the opening week of the season for a return for Rob Gronkowski.
The Pro Bowl tight end is working back from a torn ACL suffered last December 8 against the Browns. According to NFLN Gronkowski's rehab is "right on schedule" and that it's "possible" he could be ready for the start of training camp on July 24 in Foxborough.
But NFLN emphasized there will be caution as Gronkowski continues to work to return to full health and that the "goal is to have him on the field for Week 1."
Gronkowski worked with the rehab staff and other injured players throughout OTA action and mini-camp practices this spring. He did spend some time running pretty hard in sight of the media during one workout, but has yet to take part in any drills or work in front of the media on any real football-related action.
The Patriots have a rather thin depth chart at tight end behind Gronkowski. Michael Hoomanawanui is the veteran backup, but the team did not draft or sign a veteran player at the position this offseason. The rest of the depth includes fullback James Develin, undrafted rookies Asa Watson and Justin Jones as well as returning injured practice squader D.J. Williams.
Do you think Gronkowski will be ready for Week 1? Should he play Week 1? Let us know with a comment below!