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New England Patriots > Patriots Blog > 2017 Patriots Season

NFL Hands Down One Game Suspension For Gronkowski

Ian Logue
Ian Logue on Twitter
4 years ago at 4:28 pm ET
Posted Under: 2017 Patriots Season

NFL Hands Down One Game Suspension For GronkowskiTimothy T. Ludwig - USA TODAY Sports

It looks like Tom Brady may be down another target next Monday night down in Miami.

The NFL wasted little time in handing out their punishment for Rob Gronkowski’s hit on Tre’Davious White during yesterday’s win over the Bills, announcing a one game suspension for the veteran tight end on Monday afternoon.

Adam Schefter reported the news, with Gronkowski slated to miss next week’s game against the Dolphins unless it’s overturned on appeal.  Schefter reports that Gronkowski will appeal the decision, but it seems like he may have a tough time.

Schefter posted the official release, which included a portion of the letter to Gronkowski.  It said the tight end broke multiple rules when he hit White following an interception by the Bills’ defensive back, and that was the reason for the punishment.

According to the statement, Gronkowski “broke Rule 12, Section 2, Article 6,” which prohibits “unnecessary roughness” and specifically bans both “forcibly contacting a runner when he is out of bounds,” and “running, diving into…or throwing the body against or on a player who (1) is out of the play or (2) should not have reasonably anticipated such contact by an opponent before or after the ball is dead,” as well as Rule 12, Section 2, Article 7, which prohibits “initiating unnecessary contact against a player who is in a defenseless posture”.  Players who are “on the ground” are both “defenseless” and protected from “forcible” hits to the “head or neck area with the helmet, facemask, or shoulder.”

“Your actions were not incidental, could have been avoided and placed the opposing player at risk of injury,” said the letter.  “The Competition Committee has clearly expressed its goal of ‘eliminating flagrant hits that have no place in our game.  Those hits include the play you were involved in yesterday.”

Schefter points out that his suspension will cost him $281,250 in lost salary and as Miguel Benzan points out, may also cost him $5.5 million in incentives.

Gronkowski’s loss is significant as the team has been without receiver Chris Hogan and has gotten little production from fellow tight end Dwayne Allen.  They don’t have much left in the receiver group, with Phillip Dorsett joining Danny Amendola and Brandin Cooks, who have largely benefited by Gronkowski’s presence on the field.

The good news is, Gronkowski’s availability for the Pittsburgh game in two weeks is no longer in doubt, but he just increased the level of difficulty for an offense that now has to go out and beat a tough Miami defense on the road.

It’s unfortunate, but it’s safe to say the punishment is severe enough where the league obviously got their point across.  Now it’s just up to his coaches and teammates to figure out how to get through this week without him as they try and get another Division win against the Dolphins on Monday night.


Posted Under: 2017 Patriots Season
Tags: 2017 Patriots Season Buffalo Bills Miami Dolphins Pittsburgh Steelers Rob Gronkowski Tra'Davious White


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