Update — Gronkowski has been ruled out for Thursday Night Football vs. the Eagles in Week 6, per Jordan Schultz.
Sources: #Bucs TE Rob Gronkowski is OUT for Thursday night’s game with the #Eagles. I’m told Gronk has made “steady progress” since suffering cracked/broken ribs and a punctured lung Week 3 — but isn’t quite there yet.— Jordan Schultz (@Schultz_Report) October 12, 2021
Tuesday update — Gronkowski was a DNP at practice again on Tuesday ahead of TNF vs. the Eagles. So that isn’t helping his chances of returning to the lineup for Week 6. Coach Bruce Arians told Jenna Laine of ESPN that the Bucs won’t know if Gronk will travel with the team or not to Philly until Wednesday. Arians was encouraged by Gronk’s progress this week.
Monday evening update: To no surprise, Gronk did not participate in practice on Monday. This lends more credence to him being sat out of Thursday’s matchup in Philly as he continues to recover from his rib injury.
Some key injuries to monitor from the #Bucs estimated practice report:— Doug Kyed (@DougKyed) October 11, 2021
QB Tom Brady (thumb): limited
WR Chris Godwin (knee/ankle): limited
TE Rob Gronkowski (ribs): DNP
Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians indicated on Monday that it’ll be very close on whether or not tight end Rob Gronkowski will return this week, per Jenna Laine of ESPN.
Gronkowski has been out of action for the last weeks, going down in the Bucs’ Week 3 loss at the Los Angeles Rams. Gronk was taken out of the game after taking a gnarly hit, ultimately ending up with four cracked ribs, a broken rib, and a punctured lung. The future Hall of Famer has been week-to-week ever since.
Prior to the injury, Gronkowski was putting up numbers like his prime, New England self. He had 16 receptions for 184 yards and four touchdowns in just two-and-a-half games.
Fantasy football implications
The Bucs have a short week of preparation as they travel up to Philadelphia for the Thursday night game. For that reason, they’ll most likely rest Gronk for at least one more week and pencil him in for their Week 7 showdown against the Bears.
In the meantime, expect the committee of OJ Howard, Cameron Brate, and Codey McElroy to continue to hold down the fort at tight end.