NFL roundup: Gronkowski may need back surgery too

The SportsXchange

The health status of New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski seems to be getting more complicated by the day.

One day after it was reported that he will undergo a fourth surgery on his forearm next week, multiple media outlets reported on Friday that he may need back surgery as well.

Gronkowski recently underwent an MRI on his back to check on a disc problem he has had since last season, according to the report, which is based on information from a person familiar with Gronkowski's medical status.

A source told USA Today the disc in question is not the same one that needed to be shaved down in 2009, causing him to miss the entire 2009 season, which was his final year at the University of Arizona.

A decision on whether back surgery will be required has not yet been made.

Gronkowski is scheduled to visit spine specialist Robert Watkins sometime after he undergoes next week's surgery to implant a new plate into his forearm.

If back surgery is needed, it is hoped the recovery time for that procedure will coincide with the recovery time for the forearm operation. Recovery time for the arm surgery is expected to be eight to 10 weeks.

--- Two more rookies -- second-round pick Jamie Collins and seventh-rounder Steve Beauharnais -- signed with the Patriots.

---Seattle Seahawks defensive end Bruce Irvin was suspended for the first four games of the 2013 season by the NFL for violating the league's policy on performance-enhancing substances.

Last season, as a rookie, Irvin did not start any games but played in all 16 and recorded eight sacks.

--While the Denver Broncos were willing to stick out Peyton Manning's neck in terms of guaranteeing him $20 million in 2014, the team is covered by insurance if he is unable to play due to any other injury.

That is the simplified essence of the so-called "renegotiation" announced in the NFL's official transaction log -- the inclusion of an insurance policy that takes the Broncos off the hook for 2014 for an injury not related to his neck.

Denver submitted the contract with revised language to the NFL on Thursday. Manning's salary and salary cap numbers do not change, if he is healthy.

---Tyron Smith, the 22-year-old left tackle of the Dallas Cowboys, was allegedly threatened by his mother and stepfather, who also threatened the life of Smith's girlfriend.

His attorney alleged Smith's family took at least $1 million from the second-year pro, who last year was forced to call 911 when siblings came to his suburban Dallas home seeking "financial gain," according to a police incident report.

"There was a certain amount I agreed to give them, but it went way beyond that and I was just like, 'I'm done,'" Smith told the Dallas Morning News.

---New York Jets running back Mike Goodson was arrested in Denville, N.J., as the passenger of a vehicle found stopped in the center-left lane of Route 80 at 3 a.m. Friday.

Goodson was the passenger in a car driver by Garant Evans. He faces charges for possession of marijuana (under 50 grams), possession of drug paraphernalia, unlawful possession of a handgun, possession of a loaded handgun and possession of hollow point ammunition according to New Jersey State Police documents obtained by The Sports Xchange.

---Free agent safety Charles Woodson will visit with the Oakland Raiders on Tuesday, his agent told ESPN.

Woodson, 36, was released by the Green Bay Packers earlier this offseason. He has visited with the San Francisco 49ers and Denver Broncos, but has not received an offer. Agent Carl Poston said the Carolina Panthers and New York Giants have also shown some interest in Woodson.

---The Washington Redskins signed two more rookies - second-round cornerback David Amerson and fourth-round pick safety Phillip Thomas. Terms of the deals were not disclosed.

---The Atlanta Falcons signed four draft picks: defensive end Malliciah Goodman, defensive end Stansly Maponga, safety Kemal Ishmael and safety Zeke Motta. The terms of the deals were not disclosed.

--- The Oakland Raiders confirmed they signed free agent punter Chris Kluwe, who spent the past eight years with the Vikings.

Kluwe played in 127 career games in his eight years with Minnesota. He holds the franchise record with a 44.4-yard average (623 punts, 27,683 yards). His net average of 37.2 yards is second in Vikings history.

---Quarterback Brian Hoyer signed a two-year deal with the Cleveland Browns, who also waived tight end Garret Hoskins.

Hoyer, 27, has spent most of his time in the NFL as a backup with the New England Patriots, Pittsburgh Steelers and Cardinals.
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