EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — Rob Gronkowski’s return to the New England Patriots’ lineup was short-lived.
After sitting out last weekend’s win over the San Francisco 49ers with a chest injury, Gronkowski started Sunday’s game against the New York Jets but exited the field late in the first quarter. The Patriots later announced the tight end was dealing with a back injury and his return was questionable.
Gronkowski was targeted twice before heading to the locker room, with he and quarterback Tom Brady failing to connect on two deep passes.
Gronkowski has missed three games this season — two with a hamstring injury and another with his chest ailment. He and Martellus Bennett were the Patriots’ only active tight ends Sunday.
UPDATE (6:14 p.m. ET): Gronkowski has been ruled out for the remainder of the game.
UPDATE (6:40 p.m.): Gronkowski’s injury is not considered serious, a source told ProFootballTalk.
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