Tom Brady tried to quell reports that the team was upset with Rob Gronkowski not playing. (Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
If there's any resentment in the New England Patriots locker room toward tight end Rob Gronkowski, quarterback Tom Brady isn't seeing it — or he's at least not publicly disclosing it.
“I don’t think there’s any resentment toward Rob or any other player on our team that is fighting through rehabilitation to get back on the field,” Brady said in an interview with Westwood One, according to Pro Football Talk.
“Look, everyone loves having Rob out on the field but we also understand that these medical decisions are out of the hands of the players and coaches. And if the doctors, when they clear them, they clear them, and when they don’t, they don’t. That goes for every player in the NFL. It’s not just our team, it’s every team. So we’ll be excited to get him back. When that is, I don’t have the answer, but I prepare each week regardless of who’s out there."
Gronkowski's season has still failed to get off the ground while he recovers from offseason arm and back surgeries, despite the fact that some in the organization said he'd "definitely" be playing by Week 4. Because Gronkowski still gives the impression of going "all-out" in practice, some players are reportedly frustrated that he isn't playing on Sundays and helping the team win.
The Patriots have cleared Gronkowski to return to the active roster. But the independent Dr. James Andrews and Dr. Jesse Jupiter have not said he can return. Until they do, it is likely that Gronkowski will not play.
Gronkowski's mother, Diane, told The Boston Herald that her son is "dying to play."
" You got to go with the guys that are healthy and the guys who are ready to play. And look, we’ve had plenty of guys contribute to get to 5-1 at this point," Brady said. "So I have a lot of confidence in the guys I’m out there with and whenever Rob comes back, whenever that is and he’s cleared, the team will be excited to have him back.”