What's buzzing:

Roto Arcade

Finally: Rob Gronkowski expected to debut Sunday

Scott Pianowski
Roto Arcade

View photo

.

Banner day for the Patriots (USAT)

It looks like the agonizing Rob Gronkowski wait is over, and not a moment too soon. You can only play Hungry Hungry Hippos for so long.

Let's go to the Twitter:

It's surprising to see Patriots news this cut and dried on a Friday, especially with a Jets game on the way, but there you go. Take Gronkowski out of the garage, remove the covering, take the car for a spin - and bring Tom Brady with you.

Gronkowski reportedly has been terrific in recent practices, if you believe the words of his teammates (and why wouldn't you trust everything you hear from Foxboro? Helpful organization.). I'm giving Gronkowski a modest No. 10 ranking on my Week 7 tight end board for now, but I'll revisit before Sunday. Let's see if any additional news comes out between now and the end of Friday's practice.

Some fake footballers will want to explore trade possibilities with Gronkowski set to return. Maybe you got lucky with a Julius Thomas or Jordan Cameron play on the cheap and now have two strong tight end options. I wouldn't be afraid to dangle Gronkowski on the market, too. Fantasy owners often have a difficult time staying grounded on the eve of any major return or debut. The optimistic urge is hard to suppress. This is Christmas Eve without the egg nog.

Gronkowski's obviously a dominant player when right (as both a receiver and blocker), but he's also had a laundry list of physical problems and surgeries, dating back to his time at the University of Arizona. This season's wait has been tied to back and forearm issues.

Is Gronkowski ready for full snaps on Sunday? Can he play the final 10 games without incident? How quickly will his timing return in the passing game? No one can say. But after watching Zach Sudfeld's flop and the Michael Hoomanawanui Show (not to mention a lot of uneven wideout play), the Patriots welcome back their potential dominator with open arms. This passing game is completely different if you add a useful Gronkowski to the mix.

Share your Gronkowski expectations, for this week and beyond, in the comments. (Talk about your Brady projections as well, if you like.) Have fun with your shiny new toy.

View Comments (84)
  • Real battling hard to thwart Barca treble charge

    Real battling hard to thwart Barca treble charge

    By Iain Rogers MADRID (Reuters) - Real Madrid have never won the Spanish treble and are fighting tooth and nail in La Liga to prevent arch-rivals Barcelona scooping Champions League and domestic league and Cup titles for a second time. Barca … More »

    Reuters - 23 minutes ago
  • Gladbach without injured Stranzl for final four games

    Gladbach without injured Stranzl for final four games

    Borussia Moenchenglabdach will be without captain Martin Stranzl for the remainder of their season as they battle to secure their first Champions League group stage qualification, the club said on Monday. The Austrian central defender, who has made … More »

    Reuters - 37 minutes ago
  • Former No. 1 Lee Chong Wei given backdated, 8-month ban

    Former No. 1 Lee Chong Wei given backdated, 8-month ban

    Former top-ranked badminton player Lee Chong Wei has been given a backdated eight-month doping ban after testing positive in August at the world championships, allowing him to return to competition on Friday. The Badminton World Federation … More »

    AP - Sports - 56 minutes ago
  • Lee's Olympic dream flickers again

    By John O'Brien SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Lee Chong Wei's dream of winning Olympic gold is back on after the Badminton World Federation (BWF) gave him the benefit of the doubt following a positive doping test. Lee could have been banned for up to two … More »

    Reuters - 1 hour 5 minutes ago
  • Kipchoge executes perfect race to win London Marathon

    Kipchoge executes perfect race to win London Marathon

    By Tom Hayward LONDON (Reuters) - Marathons are increasingly being decided by the smallest margins and Sunday's men's race in London was no different with Eliud Kipchoge seizing victory with a perfectly executed plan. While much of the attention … More »

    Reuters - 1 hour 19 minutes ago