Rob Gronkowski injury: Fourth forearm surgery successful

USA TODAY Sports

The road to return was given a boost today, as the Patriots' tight end underwent a successful surgery.

Rob Gronkowski underwent his fourth forearm surgery Monday in an effort to clean out the infection in the arm, as well as replace a plate that was put in for support. Reports out of New England indicate that the surgery was a success, expediting the tight end's return to competition.

According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the infection is gone, and the plate was successfully replaced. With recent news that Gronkowski is dealing with a back injury in addition to his widely-known forearm trouble, Patriots fans were overdue for some good news regarding one of the team's biggest offensive weapons.

Gronkowski missed five games in 2012, but still managed to have an extremely productive season. Though he was unable to help in the playoffs due to his arm, he still managed to add 790 receiving yards and 11 touchdowns during the regular season. A healthy Gronkowski, paired with Aaron Hernandez, will help patch the Patriots' holes after losing Wes Welker to free agency. Asked to assume a starting role, Hernandez finished with 472 yards in eight starts, including two impressive playoff games.

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