Pats Beat: TE Rob Gronkowski being used as a blocker

It's been a slow start to the 2016 season on the stat sheet for New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski, who has just one reception in his first two games. That catch came in the fourth quarter of Sunday's 16-0 loss to the Buffalo Bills, drawing a cheer from the home crowd at Gillette Stadium who has grown used to seeing much more from Gronkowski as a pass-catcher.

The limited production has sparked some to wonder if Gronkowski is still hurt, but after a brief film study, the answer is that it's more a result of the way the Patriots are utilizing him than anything else.

Consider on Sunday that Gronkowski played 41 of 58 offensive snaps and only released into a pass route 13 times.

Fantasy Impact: 

The story pointed out QB Jacoby Brissett didn't even look Gronk's direction on his routes, however that should change with the return of Tom Brady this week. The volume of the offense should grow as a result. The story also called Gronk's recovery from the hamstring injury a 'breaking-in process.'

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