, Gloucester, MA

September 7, 2013

Crunch Time

Gloucester Daily Times

---- — Doubtful

The Patriots finally placed tight end Rob Gronkowski on the injury report Friday listing him as doubtful for Sunday’s season opener against Buffalo.

Gronkowski’s status for Sunday is a surprise to no one but it was surprising to see the tight end, who underwent four offseason surgeries on his forearm and back, return to the practice field this week and practice in full pads.

Gronkowski could return as early as week two against the Jets according to rumors but a week three or week four return seems more likely. Either way, it’s a good sign to see him in action even if it’s just practice. The surgeries put some serious doubts on his availability for the season as a whole and now it looks like he will only miss the first quarter of the year worst case.

Front office rift?

Doc Rivers appeared to have left the Celtics for the Clippers on a good note with his old organization. But is there a rift between the old head coach and Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge?

Ainge said to the press this week that it was Rivers’ decision to leave the team and he wanted him to stay.

“It’s not a place that I chose for him to go or a place that I wanted him to be,” Ainge said.

Rivers predictably refuted Ainge’s claim.

“Honestly, I was very disappointed in that part of Danny’s press conference. Other than that, Danny and I have no issues. Danny knows, just like I know, that that’s not true,” Rivers said on WEEI.

I have to believe Ainge on this one, Rivers certainly wanted to leave Boston, but I can’t blame him for not wanting to go through another rebuilding phase.

Longhorns go 0 for 4’s Bruce Feldman wrote that Texas didn’t pursue Texas natives Andrew Luck, Robert Griffin III and Johnny Manziel, who all have become legendary quarterbacks. Add to that list, Florida State freshman Jameis Winston, who looks like he’ll be The Next Big Thing. Feldman says Winston reached out to the Longhorns but they didn’t reciprocate.

If UT coach Mack Brown is fired after this season, the QB blunders will be the reason why.

-Compiled by Nick Curcuru