The New England Patriots lost their first game of the season to the Denver Broncos on Sunday night and they also lost star tight end Rob Gronkowski to a knee injury.
The Patriots lost 30-24 in overtime to fall to 10-1. With about three minutes left in the game, Gronkowski went down hard, appearing to injure his knee. He remained on the ground for several minutes before getting carted off the field.
There was no immediate word on the extent of his injury, but ESPN is reporting the injury does not appear to be serious.
Following the loss, coach Bill Belichick said, "I'm really proud of the way our team fought tonight. We gave a tremendous effort, played really hard. Obviously there were some things that we could of done better, could of coached better, could of played better, but guys really played hard and I have all the respect in the world for this football team the way they competed."
Quarterback Tom Brady spoke out on Gronkowski's injury, saying, "It's so hard to see these guys get hurt like this. I always have a lot of respect for players who play this game because you risk a lot to play and I think a lot of time that gets overlooked, because you sacrifice a lot. And I think guys sacrifice their bodies and you know it's hard to see your friends get taken down like that."
Brady said on WEEI-FM on Monday morning that Gronkowski was in "good spirits" on the plane ride home from Denver.
New England is already short-handed due to injuries. Running back Dion Lewis is out for the year, and wide receivers Julian Edelman and Danny Amendola are also hurt.