Patriots TE Rob Gronkowski could require back surgery According to USA Today... This has been the one issue of Gronk's that I had always been concerned with. Where everyone is talking about the forearm, everyone seems to have forgotten that his biggest knock out of college was the discs in his back. Last year, it was clear his back was bothering him, and this report confirms it. Arms can heal, but back injures, especially chronic back injuries, can derail careers. Let's just hope this isn't so much a structural thing as it is just pain management.