TAMPA, Fla. — The New England Patriots will have to make do without their star tight end Thursday.
Rob Gronkowski, who was listed as questionable with a thigh injury Wednesday, is among seven Patriots who will be inactive for Thursday’s game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Here’s the full list:
TE Rob Gronkowski (thigh)
DT Alan Branch (healthy scratch)
RB Rex Burkhead (ribs)
CB Eric Rowe (groin)
OL Cole Croston (healthy scratch)
OT LaAdrian Waddle (healthy scratch)
LB Harvey Langi (healthy scratch)
Tight ends Dwayne Allen and rookie Jacob Hollister will have to step up with Gronkowski out. Allen doesn’t have a catch through four games, and Hollister has just two receptions for 24 yards.
Allen so far has been a major disappointment from a pass-catching perspective. The Patriots acquired him, along with a sixth-round pick, for a fourth-round selection in a trade with the Indianapolis Colts this past spring
Cornerback Stephon Gilmore and linebacker Elandon Roberts, both of whom appeared to be game-time decisions based on pregame warmups, are active. Wide receiver/special teams ace Matthew Slater will make his season debut after missing the first four weeks with a hamstring injury. David Harris is back to being active after he was a healthy scratch in Week 4.
Thumbnail photo via Zack Cox/NESN.com