New England Patriots: Aaron Hernandez More Than Capable if Rob Gronkowski Can't Go

By Andrew Fisher
Aaron Hernandez New England Patriots
Greg M. Cooper-USA Today Sports

Most of us are starting to wonder about New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski. Is he going to be one of those guys that’s ultra-talented, but just can’t stay on the field? After rumors of another surgery to fix a disc issue in his back, there’s a real possibility that he’ll miss significant time in the 2013 season. But is it really that big of deal for the Pats?

Of course, New England is a better team with a 100% Gronk, but they’ve also got a guy on the roster who’d be a star on most teams – Aaron Hernandez. One of Tom Brady‘s favorite targets, Hernandez has shown glimpses of greatness over his first three seasons. But, he’s also had problems staying on the field.

To this point, I’ve yet to see any news of Hernandez battling any injuries, so it seems he’ll come into camp at full strength. This is great news for the Pats.

Even if Gronk is ready for the start of the season, you’d figure Hernandez will see an increased role, anyway. If Gronk can’t go at all, then it will be Hernandez’s time to shine. I think he’s got all the tools to be a Pro Bowl tight end. He’s been sharing time with arguably the game’s best TE over the last three years, and clearly he’s not been able to reach his full potential.

New England should know fairly soon if Gronkowski will have to go under the knife again, and if that’s the case, Hernandez will be the man from day one this season.


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