Belichick ‘disappointed’ on Gronk: ‘Nobody’s worked harder’

FILE - In this Nov. 27, 2016, file photo, New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski (87) walks off the field with an injury during the second quarter of an NFL football game against the New York Jets,in East Rutherford, N.J. Gronkowski is having surgery for a herniated disk in his back, a person with knowledge of the details tells The Associated Press. The person spoke Thursday, Dec. 1, 2016, on condition of anonymity because the surgery has not yet been announced by the team. The surgery was first reported by the Buffalo News.(AP Photo/Bill Kostroun, File)

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) — Patriots coach Bill Belichick says he’s “disappointed” to lose tight end Rob Gronkowski for the rest of the season due to a back injury.

Belichick praised Gronkowski’s hard work on Friday and called the injury “unfortunate.”

The three-time All-Pro is scheduled for surgery on a herniated disk in his back. The Patriots said he’s likely to be out the rest of the season, but they will wait until after Friday’s surgery to decide.

Gronkowski was injured during the Nov. 13 loss to the Seahawks on a hit from safety Earl Thomas. He called it “probably one of the hardest I’ve got hit in my career.”

Gronkowski sat out the following week against San Francisco but played part of the first half last week in New England’s win over the New York Jets.

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