FOXBORO -- Aaron Hernandez said Monday night he's confident the Patriots tight ends will be able to pick up the slack in the wake of Rob Gronkowski's arm injury, which likely will have the big tight end on the sidelines for the next 4-8 weeks.
"The way this program is, the way [coach] Bill [Belichick] makes us become the players we become, we all have confidence and we all know we have to come to play every game, regardless," Hernandez said after practice on Monday. "And in the NFL, people go down and other people have to step up.
"Everyone has to step up and make plays, and follow the game plan. I'm sure we'll be all right," he added. "Obviously, it's tough. Obviously, he's one of the best players in the league. But, we have a lot of players, and everyone has to step up to fill the void."
Hernandez, who hasn't been 100 percent since he suffered an ankle injury in a Week 2 loss to the Cardinals, has been close to returning the last few weeks but has yet to play in a game since an Oct. 21 win over the Jets in Foxboro. His return certainly would be a boost for the New England offense, particularly with Gronkowski on the sideline.
The 23-year-old, who has 17 catches for 143 yards and two touchdowns on the year, said Monday he's "feeling pretty good," but he doesn't buy into the idea that with Gronkowski on the shelf, that puts more pressure on him to get back on the field sooner.
"It puts pressure on everybody. Not just one player can just replace him. Everyone has to step up," he said. "It'll change some things, [but] like I said, everyone will have to step up. And whatever the change is, we have to make plays and fill that void we'll be missing.
"We have a lot of great players. Like I said a couple of times already, people have to step up because we're going to be missing a great player. Everyone has to step up that much more."
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Mike Klis discusses Brady vs. Manning, Welker and Belichick, and the rest of the Pats-Broncos story lines.
FOXBORO — WEEI.com’s Mike Petraglia and Chris Price preview the big showdown between the 6-1 Denver Broncos and the 6-2 New England Patriots and the 16th edition in the Tom Brady-Peyton Manning rivalry.
Chris Price, WEEI.com, joins the show to talk about the Patriots upcoming game against Denver. Chris got in the the DB match-ups with Denver's receivers, some ideas on how to blitz Peyton, Welker's impact, and a prediction.
Jackie MacMullan joins MFB for the first time this season. She discusses the rejection of NBA lottery reform, Rajon Rondo, and the Celtics chances this season.
Mut, Rob Bradford and Alex Speier are back and talking not only Red Sox, but MLB Hot Stove. They talk with Red Sox GM Ben Cherington, and take some phone calls about some of the Red Sox potential moves.
Mut, Rob Bradford, and Alex Speier talk with Red Sox GM Ben Cherington. Ben addresses some questions regarding Will Middlebrooks, Rusney Castillo, as well as Yoenis Cespedes' future with the club.
Joe Castiglione does his annual wrap-up of the season by reading the poem by Bart Giamatti.
We discuss the Bruins blown 2 goal lead against the Wild at the Garden and where they go from here with the great Jack Edwards of NESN.
NESN's Andy Brickley joined the show following Boston's 4-3 loss to the Minnesota Wild. Brick talked about Patrice Bergeron's line getting beat a lot, the Bruins' lack of focus in their 6 losses, and the big blow to the defense with Torey Krug's injury.
Joe McDonald joins the guys to talk to about the Chara injury and how the Bruins will move forward without him.
Happy birthday Kirk!!!!
The top stories of the day as recounted by Kirk Minihane.
The guys got dressed up for Kirk's 40th.
The Broncos defensive line, Julian Edelman, and Revis and Browner
Lou Merloni argues that the upcoming Patriots-Broncos game will not have a big impact on the playoff picture or the rest of the season.
Dale and Greg Dickerson try and find new and exciting ways to discuss Manning vs Brady 16, including how each QB fares in adverse weather conditions.
Dale and Greg Dickerson take a few minutes to remember Tom Menino.
We look at four free agents the Sox might have an eye on, two on the mound, two at third base.
Mikey, Villani and Lenny are talking about the 2004 Red Sox on the anniversary of Game 4 of the ALCS with Dave Roberts steal abd Bill Mueller driving him in and what it was like to witness.
Mikey, Mut and Lenny are talking about the Patriots and how they have stacked up through the years and what got them to the three championships and five Super Bowl appearances in the Brady-Belichick era.
Mikey and Mut take a call from someone who wants to criticize Belichick the GM and his history of drafting players and making moves in the draft.
WEEI.com’s Scott McLaughlin is joined by Joe Meloni of College Hockey News on the first episode of the College Puckcast. They talk about the wrist injury that will sideline Boston College defenseman Steve Santini until at least January, as well as the good start for Boston University and its star freshman, Jack Eichel. Other topics include fast starts for Vermont and UMass-Lowell and slow starts for Providence and Northeastern.
The morning show was having another great podcast, until the whole thing came to screeching halt. Halloween, Asian strippers and proctologists.
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