New England Patriots

Rob Gronkowski hurt his ankle and fantasy owners are terrified

Rob Gronkowski came into the New England Patriots Week 4 tilt against the Miami Dolphins as “questionable” on the injury report, and he exited the game in the third quarter with an apparent ankle injury.

With an average of 63 receiving yards per game, Rob Gronkowski has easily been the New England Patriots most important skill position player with Julian Edelman suspended for four games to start the 2018 regular season. Gronkowski has faced double and even triple coverage through the first four weeks, and life just got more difficult for the superstar tight end.

Prior to the New England Patriots Week 4 battle against the AFC East-leading Miami Dolphins, Gronk was listed as “questionable” on the injury report with an ankle injury. Despite being limited in practice all week, Gronkowski’s status for the Dolphins game was never in any doubt, especially since he has been the only consistent threat for Tom Brady.

Gronk’s ankle injury may have been somewhat downplayed in the build-up to this game, but fantasy owners and Patriots fans have been forced to take notice. According to long-time NFL reporter Adam Caplan, Gronkowski exited the game in the third quarter with an ankle injury, and the Patriots stated that he was questionable to return.

Usually when a player is questionable to return to a game, their afternoon is over. It’s a potentially tough blow for the Patriots, because while they are used to Gronk missing games with various ailments, his value to the team in 2018 is perhaps higher than ever due to the inconsistent play of the wide receivers.

Thankfully for the Patriots, Josh Gordon was active today, and Edelman will be on the way back for Week 5 against Andrew Luck and the Indianapolis Colts.

Gronkowski hasn’t featured in all 16 games of a regular season since his monstrous 17-touchdown, 1,300-yard campaign as a sophomore in 2011. The star tight end’s latest ankle woes could potentially bounce him out of next week’s battle against Indianapolis, so Patriots fans will be glued to his status.

Fantasy owners are usually more concerned than fantasy owners when Gronkowski goes down, because while the Patriots can adjust by making use of other pass-catchers (and taking advantage of Brady’s brilliance), there are fewer replacements in fantasy football. Owners may already be reeling from Tyler Eifert’s gruesome injury, and sleeper tight ends on the waiver wire are few and far between. Therefore, fantasy owners are hoping that Gronk won’t miss much time, though the Patriots are known for wisely playing it cautious with their star pass-catcher.

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If Gronkowski’s ankle injury is serious enough to only cost him a few games, the Patriots offense should be fine. Not only were they carving up the previously undefeated Dolphins, but they received a huge boost from touted rookie running back Sony Michel, who clearly bounced back from a rough outing against the Detroit Lions. With Michel poised to carry the load and the duo of Gordon and Edelman ready to click in Week 5, the Patriots can afford to take things slow with Gronk’s ailing ankle.

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