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NFL roundup: Patriots' Gronkowski apparently suffers torn ACL

The SportsXchange

The New England Patriots lost Rob Gronkowski, their star tight end and quarterback Tom Brady's preferred target, to what appears to be a serious right knee injury.

Gronkowski reportedly suffered a torn ACL when Browns safety T.J. Ward put his helmet directly on Gronkowski's right knee to make a tackle. An MRI slated for Monday is expected to confirm the in-game diagnosis.

Gronkowski was taken to a local hospital after being carted off the field following a low hit by Ward in the third quarter.

---Washington Redskins coach Mike Shanahan was so disillusioned with how owner Dan Snyder was running the team that he cleaned out his desk and nearly quit last season, ESPN reported.

Citing a source, the incident occurred the week of the Redskins' playoff game against the Seattle Seahawks. Shanahan was reportedly expected to leave the team as soon as the season ended.

Shanahan was upset that Snyder valued quarterback Robert Griffin III over all the other players on the team. According to the report, Shanahan was content to leave the Redskins after winning the NFC East title but changed his mind after the team lost to Seattle in the playoffs and Griffin sustained a serious knee injury in the game.

---The Pittsburgh Steelers will lose a 2014 late-round draft pick because coach Mike Tomlin interfered with a play in progress during the Nov. 28 game against the Baltimore Ravens, CBS Sports reported.

The NFL will decide the exact nature of the draft choice after all compensatory picks are sent this spring. The league also still considers it an open case.

Tomlin was fined $100,000 on Wednesday.

---An appeal decision on the one-year suspension of Seattle Seahawks cornerback Brandon Browner for violating the NFL's substance-abuse policy is not expected until late this month, ESPN reported.

That means Browner can continue playing at least until the decision is made. However, Browner is out while recovering from a groin strain. He did not play Sunday's game against the San Francisco 49ers.

---Jon Gruden told ESPN that he will remain with the network as an analyst through at least the 2014 season.

Gruden is a rumored candidate for the vacant Houston Texans' head coaching job, but said he is going nowhere.
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