The Patriots announced Friday that they have released tight end Dan Gronkowski. The brother of New England tight end Rob Gronkowski, the 6-foot-5, 255-pounder, was signed by the Patriots on September 7, 2011 and played in the first two games for the Patriots. He is a veteran of two NFL seasons with Detroit (2009) and Denver (2010). Gronkowski originally entered the NFL as a seventh-round draft pick (255th overall) of Detroit in 2009 out of Maryland. He was traded by Detroit to Denver on Sept. 4, 2010. He was released by Denver on Sept. 3.

FOXBORO -- The Patriots officially listed tight end Aaron Hernandez (knee), offensive tackle Sebastian Vollmer (back) and defensive lineman Mike Wright (concussion) as out for Sunday's game against the Bills in Buffalo. Here's the rest of the Friday afternoon injury report:

S Patrick Chung (hand -- limited participation)
CB Ras-I Dowling (hip -- limited participation)
LB Gary Guyton (hamstring -- limited participation)
DT Albert Haynesworth (back -- did not practice)

FOXBORO -- With a cast protecting his right wrist and thumb, Patrick Chung returned to practice on Friday as the Patriots worked out in shorts and shells on the main Gillette Stadium field. 

Chung reportedly had surgery earlier this week to place a pin in his thumb following an injury during Sunday's win over the Chargers. He missed practice on Wednesday and Thursday before returning Friday. 

FOXBORO -- Patriots defensive end Andre Carter was informed Friday that he was fined $15,000 for his hit on Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers on Sunday. 

Carter was flagged 15 yards for roughing the passer for his hit on the first play of San Diego's first drive of the second quarter. Carter hit Rivers as he released the ball but was penalized for what was deemed to be driving the quarterback into the turf.

Patriots cornerback Devin McCourty made his weekly appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show Friday morning.

The Patriots are expected to be without injured safety Patrick Chung Sunday when they visit the Bills.

"That happens in a season," McCourty said. "I think we're prepared for him not to be out there. Guys have to step up. He's played a lot of plays early in the season for us. It will be a little different without him. But I'm excited to see guys get that opportunity to step up and play well come Sunday."

A few thoughts on the second half of “Bill Belichick: A Football Life,” just as soon as I figure out how to change the clock on the dashboard of my car ...

FOXBORO -- Defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth missed his first practice with the Patriots since Sept. 10, sitting out the Thursday session with what the team referred to as a back injury. However, cornerback Kyle Arrington, who was held out of practice on Wednesday (he was listed as having a concussion) returned to practice in a limited role. Here's the rest of the Patriots injury report for Thursday:

Did Not Practice
S Patrick Chung (hand)
TE Dan Gronkowski (hamstring)
DT Albert Haynesworth (back)
TE Aaron Hernandez (knee)

FOXBORO -- Albert Haynesworth and Patrick Chung were among six Patriots players not spotted at the beginning of a rainy practice on the lower grass field outside Gillette Stadium Thursday afternoon. 

Chung reportedly had thumb surgery on Wednesday and is not likely to play this Sunday in Orchard Park, N.Y., as the Patriots play the Bills. Also missing on Thursday were defensive lineman Mike Wright (concussion), tight ends Aaron Hernandez (knee) and Dan Gronkowski (hamstring), and offensive tackle Sebastian Vollmer (back). 

FOXBORO -- The Patriots signed linebacker Jeff Tarpinian off the practice squad on Thursday and released linebacker A.J. Edds. Taking Tarpinian's spot on the practice squad is defensive back Josh Victorian. 

Edds was signed by the Patriots in the week prior to the season opener in Miami. He did not have a tackle against the Dolphins but made one tackle and assisted on another in the Week 2 win over the Chargers. 

San Diego defensive tackle Antonio Garay has been fined $15,000 for his hit in Patriots quarterback Tom Brady on Sunday, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter. Garay, who appeared to dive at the back of Brady's knees, wasn't flagged for the play. For more Patriots news, check out