Patriots’ Gronkowski on IR after season-ending back surgery

Gronkowski has caught 25 passes for 540 yards and three touchdowns

(AP Photo/Bill Kostroun, File)

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (WWLP) – News was handed down Saturday that confirmed what New England Patriots fans were expecting.

The team has placed tight end Rob Gronkowski on injured reserve with a back injury, which will end his 2016 season. The move is not surprising, as the team announced Thursday that they did not expect Gronkowski to return this season.

The 27-year-old underwent surgery for his injured back on Friday.

In eight games played this season, Gronkowski has caught 25 passes for 540 yards and three touchdowns.

In his absence, Martellus Bennett will take over full-time starting duty at tight end. In a corresponding move, running back D.J. Foster has been signed from the practice squad.