Originally posted on Patriots Extra  |  Last updated 1/17/13
How big of an impact will the loss of Rob Gronkowski have on the Patriots' Super Bowl chances? Jason:  The injury to Gronk seems like a non-issue at this point. He has played very little in the second half of the season, and the offense has kept on rolling. The only way his injury really hurts is if Hernandez gets injured by Pollard. No whammies. Stephen:  Against a team like the Ravens, Gronk definitely would have helped due to his ability to block and draw coverage. However, the fact New England played well in his absence for over half the season speaks to this team's ability to adjust. There's no doubt the Patriots are a better team with Gronk in the lineup, but I don't think it's going to make a huge difference in their Super Bowl pursuit. Raj:  The loss of Gronk will hurt big time. They barely beat Baltimore last year and then lost to New York with an injured Gronk. Now that he's out, it's bound to be different but I still believe that the Pats will overcome that pitfall. They still have a great offense that is better than last years. I think they can get the job done. Derek:  Don't get me wrong, having Gronk out of the field would make me supremely confident about this team's chances to hoist the Lombardi, but I still feel like they should win the title without him.  I don't want to look past Baltimore, but in my opinion, the big concern with losing Gronkowski would be if San Francisco makes the Super Bowl as well.  I left the Niners game thinking that Rob would have made a big impact in reversing that game's outcome and was thankful he'd be back for a Super Bowl rematch.  Little did I know...    Still, the Pats have had plenty of reps to get used to life without the big fella, and they've proven that they can have success without him on the field. 
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