Dec 30, 2012; Foxborough, MA, USA; New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski (87) celebrates after scoring a touchdown against the Miami Dolphins during the second half at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports
As the Patriots continue their preparations for the New Orleans Saints, their offense stands to benefit from the return of some key players on Sunday. Both Rob Gronkowski and Stevan Ridley could return to action on Sunday against New Orleans and it could not come at a better time. It would be Gronkowski’s first action since his injury against the Houston Texans in the postseason last year. The Patriots and their fans are hoping that this injection of talent will help cure what ails the Patriots offense.
Let’s get caught up on the The Patriot Way.
Rob Ninkovich Works Way to Reach Goals
Boston Herald by Jeff Howe
Rob Ninkovich was savvy enough to recognize he wasn’t going to make the Saints roster in 2009 as a second-string long snapper. Ninkovich did have enough conviction in his work ethic to believe he could make a roster when presented with the right opportunity.
Jimmy Graham Poses Unique Problem
Boston Herald by Matt Chatham
That said, the Saints’ Jimmy Graham isn’t a tight end . . . not that there’s anything wrong with that, Jerry. He’s one of the most dangerous offensive weapons in football. But he rarely stands where tight ends do, and much less does he do the in-line run-blocking part of the job. He’s the new “big wide receiver,” measuring in at 6-foot-7, 265 pounds.
Brees May be to Hot to Handle
ESPN Boston by Tedy Bruschi and Mike Reiss
For all the attention the Denver Broncos have received through the first five weeks of the season, the Saints might be the best overall team in the NFL. My theme this week is that the Saints are awfully fun to watch — unless you have to play them.
Gronkowski: Nothing New on His Status
Boston.com by Shalise Manza Young
Not that we really expected anything different, but Rob Gronkowski shed no light on what might happen with him this week in regards to whether he’ll make his much-anticipated return to the Patriots’ lineup for their game with New Orleans.
Thompkins, Dobson Developing Well – Not to Blame for Struggles on Offense
NESN by Doug Kyed
It’s not going perfectly for Kenbrell Thompkins and Aaron Dobson, but it’s surely going better than expected. There have been some speed bumps along the way. After a stellar summer for Thompkins, the undrafted rookie out of Cincinnati looked lost Week 1 against the Bills. But he’s improved since and has become a consistent part of New England’s offense. It’s obvious Brady’s trust in the rookie has increased.
Serious Concern Regarding Gronkowski’s Forearm
Pats Pulpit by Kevin O’Connor
Mike Petraglia of WEEI.com published an article on Thursday night claiming that his sources have expressed serious concern regarding the stability of Rob Gronkowski’s surgically repaired right forearm. New England Patriots team doctor Tom Gill first performed the surgery, and apparently, he may have never needed it in the first place.
Patriots-Saints Breakdown: New England Has to Keep Drew Brees Sidelined
WEEI by Christopher Price
The Patriots return to Foxboro to meet the Saints Sunday afternoon, a game that presents a serious challenge to a New England team looking to get back on track after suffering its first loss of the season. In this edition of “Scout’s Take,” one NFC scout who has watched both the Patriots and Saints takes a look at some of the points of emphasis for New England heading into Sunday’s game.
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