By Levan Reid, WBZ-TV SportsBy Levan Reid

FOXBORO (CBS) — The Patriots’ crawl plan for Rob Gronkowski has finally reached the walking stage. Yesterday, the tight end participated in 7-on-7 and 11-on-11 drills.

The contact was minimal and the times that he was out there was brief. This step for Gronk, though, is significant. He’s finally in drills where he can test his skills in a fast-paced environment.

Gronk has done mental reps and he’s done side work with Tom Brady through all of camp. That has all paid off. He got on the field and the two looked like they haven’t skipped a beat.

When the tight end spoke to us, his spirits were up and he understood that listening to the trainers has really started to pay off.

“Always a step forward, participating more and more,” Gronkowski said. “It’s going well so far, no setbacks or anything. Just having a blast competing back out there, catching some balls and making some plays.”

There is a plan is place for Gronk. He’s stated more than once that he wants to play all 16 games this season. I’m not sure if he’s on that track but the news is encouraging.

“I just love playing the game of football, so whenever they let me have the chance, I definitely want to play,” he said. “It’s up to the training staff, but we’ll see.”

Follow Levan Reid on Twitter @LevanReid.



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