FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski said Wednesday that there have been no setbacks in his recovery from a torn right ACL, and while he is not yet ready to join teammates on the field in organized team activities that started this week, he is optimistic about his progress.
"It's coming along [well]," Gronkowski said during a Patriots- and NFL-sponsored Play 60 event at Igo Elementary School in Foxborough on Wednesday morning. "Just rehabbing every day, improving every single week, and that's all I can ask for."
Unlike last year, when Gronkowski's offseason was affected by multiple surgeries on his forearm, things have been smoother with his rehab this year. Gronkowski was injured Dec. 8 and had surgery on Jan. 9.
"It's way different stuff. I just have to be patient and work hard and literally give it all I have every single day," he said. "All I can [do is let] the body heal and do what it does, and hopefully when it comes down to it, I am ready to roll."
Gronkowski was present at the Play 60 event along with owner Robert Kraft, seven teammates and Pro Football Hall of Famer Andre Tippett.
Gronkowski received a resounding cheer, which was noted by Kraft.
"He is such a well-intentioned guy and he's a lot of fun," said Kraft, who surprised students, teachers and administrators with a $60,000 donation to help build a new playground. "I've never seen Gronk, in all the time with us, ever say or do anything that had a negative overtone. He is always up, and when you are building a team atmosphere with people from different backgrounds and different places and it's a physical game, having someone like Gronk in the system is uplifting, especially if he is on the field all the time."
Along those lines, Kraft was asked how optimistic he is that Gronkowski might be ready for action.
"I do my Play 60 every day and I am down in the training room, and he's been there and he's been very diligent and working very hard," he said. "Now we just hope it translates to the field."