Bucs TE Rob Gronkowski's injuries appear to be much worse than we thought

·2-min read

You knew Rob Gronkowski's injury had to be serious considering he didn't make the trip to New England to face his former team on Sunday night

It turned out to be more serious than we were originally led to believe.

Gronkowski was ruled out of Sunday night's game in Foxborough and likely will miss several weeks. Fox's Jay Glazer indicated that in addition to the cracked ribs we knew about, Gronk also suffered one broken rib and a punctured lung.

Scary stuff — and worse when you consider he reentered the game briefly following the injury. Gronk suffered a punctured lung in 2016 against the Seahawks as a member of the Patriots.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers tight end suffered the injury in last week's loss to the Los Angeles Rams, taking a vicious third-quarter hit from linebacker Terrell Lewis. The cracked ribs were not initially detected via X-ray but were later confirmed following an MRI.

Tom Brady and the Bucs remain the heavy BetMGM betting favorites in this game for Brady's return to New England, the only NFL team he has yet to beat in his career. Brady now must try to best Bill Belichick and the Patriots without his receiving touchdowns leader, with Gronk having caught four of Brady's 10 TD passes this season.

All time, Brady and Gronk have hooked up for 102 touchdowns, counting the regular season and playoffs combined. The record for most TDs all time by a QB-receiver pair is 114, by Peyton Manning and Marvin Harrison. 

Considering that Gronkowski won't play Sunday, already has retired once before and likely will miss the next several weeks while recovering, that record might be too hard for the pair to match or surpass. 

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