FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski is being held out of practice with an injured left ankle.
Gronkowski, who set an NFL record for tight ends with 17 touchdown catches this season, limped off the field in the third quarter of Sunday's 23-20 win over Baltimore in the AFC championship game but returned about five minutes later. On Monday he was seen wearing a removable boot on his left foot.
Coach Bill Belichick said that Gronkowski would not take part Thursday in the team's first practice for the Super Bowl against the New York Giants on Feb. 5.
The Patriots also signed tight end Carson Butler, who spent most of the 2010 season on their practice squad and was released Sept. 2.