FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- When the Patriots released tight end Dan Gronkowski last month, their instructions were simple: Go get healthy.
Nineteen days after releasing him in order to gain some roster flexibility due to mounting injuries across the roster, the Patriots re-signed Gronkowski earlier this week and he said walking back into Gillette Stadium was like he never left.
"You just come right back in and you're part of the team again," said Gronkowski. "I gotta remember everything... but it's right back to business now, we're focused on Dallas."
Signed just days before the start of the regular season to add depth at a thin tight end spot, Gronkowski appeared on 40 snaps over the first two weeks of the season. A minor hamstring injury forced New England to cut ties temporarily. The hardest part: It came right before a Week 3 visit to Buffalo, where he and his younger brother, Rob, grew up.
"It's part of the business," said Gronkowski. "You gotta go out there and do your thing everyday, you can't really help what happens behind the scenes. Now I'm trying to get back in here and I'm just focused on the game plan."
Gronkowski said he stayed local during his time away from the team and simply worked on rehabbing the injury. He joked it was like getting an extra (and extended) bye in the schedule.