Timothy T. Ludwig/USA Today Sports

Rob Gronkowski (illness) returns to Patriots practice

Ryan Hannable
December 29, 2017 - 12:13 pm

FOXBORO -- The Patriots got some good news on the practice field Friday afternoon, as Rob Gronkowski returned after missing Thursday's session due to illness.

There were four players missing: Alan Branch, Rex Burkhead, Mike Gillislee and Eric Lee. Branch, Burkhead and Gillislee didn't practice all week, therefore seem highly unlikely to play Sunday against the Jets. For Lee it was his first missed practice of the week, but he's been limited with an ankle injury.

The running back position could be thin as besides Burkhead and Gillislee, James White has been limited with an ankle injury and missed last week's game against the Bills. Brandon Bolden and Dion Lewis are the only healthy running backs.

New England will host the Jets in the regular-season finale Sunday at Gillette Stadium.

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