Deji Karim's 101-yard kickoff return after a Houston field goal gave the Colts the lead for good and Indianapolis held on to beat the Texans, 28-16, Sunday at Lucas Oil Stadium, leaving the door wide open for the Patriots to clinch a first-round bye with a win over Miami. 

FOXBORO -- Patriots Pro Bowl tight end Rob Gronkowski will be active and available to play for the first time since breaking his left forearm on Nov. 18 against the Colts. 

Gronkowski has missed the last five games but still leads all NFL tight ends and Patriots receivers with 10 touchdown receptions. Gronkowski has 53 catches for 748 yards this season, his third with the Patriots. 

The Patriots have waived defensive lineman Ron Brace. The 6-foot-3, 330-pounder, a second-round pick out of Boston College in the 2009 draft, had four tackles (two solo) in 10 games played with the Patriots this season. Brace had struggled with injury for a large portion of his career with New England -- he started the 2012 season on the physically unable to perform list, and has been inactive for most of the year.

FOXBORO -- After missing his last five games with a broken left forearm, Rob Gronkowski will return to action on Sunday in the season finale against the Dolphins, according to a report from CSNNE.com's Tom Curran. 

FOXBORO -- Defensive back Marquice Cole (finger) missed his second straight practice Friday and is listed officially as "doubtful" for Sunday's regular season finale with the Dolphins at Gillette Stadium. 

FOXBORO -- Last Sunday, Vince Wilfork said he would take whatever fine was handed out for his personal foul in the fourth quarter of the game against the Jaguars. On Friday, the NFL fined the perennial Pro Bowl nose tackle $30,000 for his hit on Steve Vallos at the end of Patrick Chung's interception return. 

ESPN's Chris Mortensen made his weekly appearance on The Big Show Friday, discussing the NFL playoff picture and the future of the struggling Jets. 

With the Jets sitting fourth in the AFC East with a 6-9 record, questions surround the organization and which changes will be made in the offseason. Mortensen said he expects general manager Mike Tannenbaum to be fired, but that the team will likely keep head coach Rex Ryan.

Sports Illustrated NFL columnist Peter King made his weekly appearance on Mut & Merloni and discused the final weekend of the regular season and the playoff picture.

The Patriots have an outside shot at the No. 1 seed in the AFC and the home-field advantage that comes with it, but King noted the lack of importance regarding home playoff games in recent history.

FOXBORO -- Marquice Cole (finger) was again the only player not spotted at Patriots practice inside Gillette Stadium on Friday. The defensive back missed practice on Thursday as well as the team practiced on the main stadium field for a second straight day. 

The Patriots listed 20 players as "limited" on Thursday, including tight end Rob Gronkowski, whom Bill Belichick indicated Friday was still day-to-day. Belichick said the decision on whether Gronkowski will play and how much remains in the hands of the team's medical staff. 

NFL Network analyst Mike Lombardi, during his weekly appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show Friday morning, discusded the situation in New York with the dysfunctional Jets.