According to the Boston Globe, the New England Patriots are expected to have TE Aaron Hernandez back on Thanksgiving for their rivalry matchup against the New York Jets. This is the same team that re-injured Hernandez’s sprained ankle (sustained in Week 2) just a week after making his return from the injury against the Seattle Seahawks.
Hernandez’s return has become a pressing issue due to the injury to the Patriots other star TE Rob Gronkowski, who broke his forearm and will be out for four to six weeks. The problem is that Hernandez was pushed too soon to return earlier this year, and we can only hope that he isn’t being pushed this time around. The good thing is that Hernandez has practiced on at least a limited basis for the past two weeks, so he has returned to form. However, he has missed the past three games- including a bye week.
So Gronkowski’s injury hurts the Pats in more ways than one, and I hope we get to see more of Visanthe Shiancoe as a pass-catcher. He used to be a great red zone threat and solid TE when he had a legitimate QB throwing it to him (Brett Favre), so it will be interesting to see if he can get back on form with Tom Brady tossing targets to him.
We should also be seeing more Daniel Fells on Thursday, which is a good thing given his prowess as a blocker. He’s clearly a better player than Michael Hoomanawanui.
Based on the piece from Bedard above, it sounds like the Patriots are not pressing Aaron Hernandez into anything and that the Pats will at least be able to have one star TE going forward.
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