clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Rob Gronkowski suspended for Dolphins game

New, comments
New England Patriots v Buffalo Bills Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images

The New England Patriots will be without tight end Rob Gonkowski for their Monday Night Football contest against the Miami Dolphins after the league suspended the Pro Bowler for one game. Gronkowski was penalized during the Patriots’ game against the Buffalo Bills on Sunday when he took an unnecessary shot at cornerback Tre’Davious White.

White had just intercepted a pass from Tom Brady intended for Gronkowski. The cornerback rolled out of bounds with the ball and, as he was lying on the field face down, Gronkowski stood over them, then dove into Davis’ head, giving the Bills’ player a concussion. Gronkowski is appealing the suspension, which could allow him to play if it is not ruled upon by either Derrick Brooks or James Thrash, the two jointly appointed NFL and NFLPA appellate authorities, before the game.

After the game, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick told Bills head coach Sean McDermott, “It was bullshit. I’m sorry. I apologize.”

The NFL released a statement announcing the decision to suspended Gronkowki, which reads:

NFL Vice President of Football Operations Jon Runyan issued the suspension for multiple violations of NFL rules, including 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, forearm, or shoulder.”

In his letter to Gronkowski, Runyan wrote:

“Your actions were not incidental, could have been avoided and placed the opposing player at risk of serious injury. 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.” ​

Gronkowski will be eligible to return to the Patriots’ active roster on Tuesday, December 12 following the team’s December 11 Monday night game against the Miami Dolphins.