David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

Rob Gronkowski might not have fourth surgery, doctors still deciding, stop freaking out


It was reported earlier by the Boston Herald that New England Patriots star tight end Rob Gronkowski would need a fourth surgery on his left forearm. Gronkowski broke that forearm twice during the season (November and January), and he also needed a third surgery on it early in the offseason due to an infection. According to sources close to the Herald, the Patriots team doctors are set to perform a fourth surgery on Gronk to remove his plate and insert a new one after checking if Gronk’s arm is still infection. The sources called Gronk’s infection “stubborn”.

If Gronkowski’s arm is still infected, then the doctors will need to wait until the infection is gone in order to insert the new plate. Gronk has already been on a six-week cycle of antibiotics, so it sounds like this infection is a nasty one. If the doctors do have to wait, then the healing period would be for ten weeks, thus putting Gronkowski’s status for the start of the 2013 regular season in jeopardy. But if Gronk is not infected anymore, then he will be ready for the start of the season.

According to Mike Garafolo of the USA Today, though, Rob Gronkowski might not need a fourth surgery on his left forearm after all. A source told the USA Today that there are “no scheduled surgeries at this point”, and that the Patriots are looking at alternatives to performing yet another surgery on Gronk. In fact, Garafolo reports that the Patriots are “still few weeks away” from even deciding if Gronkowski needs another surgery performed. The Pats will reportedly have to wait until Gronk’s aforementioned antibiotic cycle ends.

It is important to note that even if Gronkowski does go under the knife for a fourth time, there is no guarantee that Gronk will not be able to start off the regular season. There is merely the chance of Gronkowski not being healthy in time for the start of the season, so I think some people are blowing this all out of proportion. In fact, I think it is very unlikely for Gronkowski to miss the start of the season, unless if the Patriots decide to play it as safe as possible (or if the infection is just that bad). Heck, that also isn’t enough to make the chances of Gronk missing the start of the season “likely” by my estimation.

You can follow Joe Soriano on Twitter @SorianoJoe.

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Tags: Mike Garafolo New England Patriots Rob Gronkowski USA Today