It was a rough week for the New England Patriots who lost a game on a crazy overtime penalty. The game, however, was not a pretty one for the Patriots, and they did not play well by their standards at all. The Patriots are suffering from a number of injuries, but after looking around the NFL, the same can be said about many teams.
If there was some good to take out of this game it is that Rob Gronkowski made his season debut and looked good considering the amount of surgeries and time missed since he last stepped on a football field in January. Tom Brady obviously was happy to have his big TE back as he targeted him a career high 17 times which was 10 more than anyone else on the Patriots. Gronk finished the day with eight catches for 114 yards. Not a bad day for a guy playing his first game in nine months.
The New York Jets did a good job of keeping Gronkowski out of the end zone, but he had two great chances. One came early in the game where he caught a pass over the middle but stumbled and fell at about the two-yard line, and the other happened on the last drive for the Patriots in regulation where Gronk almost came up with a great one handed catch which would have led to a game-winning touchdown.
There may not have been too many positive things to take out of this game, but the play of Gronkowski was encouraging for an offense that has been struggling this season. Moving forward, Gronk will have a huge impact on the offense, but the Patriots still need to do a better job. And it all starts with Tom Brady.