The New England Patriots will have their first training camp practice on Friday and it will be without tight end Rob Gronkowski after the team placed him on the physical unable to perform (PUP) list on Tuesday morning, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com.
As noted by Richard Hill of Pats Pulpit, the move isn't a surprising one after offseason back surgery for Gronkowski:
This shouldn't come as a surprise as Gronk continues to rehab. Should there be any more setbacks, Gronk would need the extra time to recover. Once a player is removed from the PUP, they can't be added back so this move makes sense for Gronk to return early in the season (if not before).
Gronkowski missed five games during the 2012 season after breaking his forearm, an injury that required multiple surgeries to repair. Coupled with the microscopic lumbar discectomy surgery that Gronkowski underwent in June, it's not surprising that he isn't ready to go for the beginning of training camp.
Joining Gronkowski on the PUP list for the beginning of camp are wide receiver Julian Edelman and tight end Jake Ballard. Players can be removed from the list at any point in time, but cannot practice until they are placed on the active roster.