There has been speculation that both injured receiver Danny Amendola and tight end Rob Gronkowski could be active this week. Amendola hasn't played since Week 1 and Gronk has yet to suit up. Those hopes were put to rest today.
Patriots TE Rob Gronkowski and WR Danny Amendola did not travel to Atlanta and will not play Sunday night vs. Falcons.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) September 28, 2013
There were reports earlier that Gronk's camp felt he wasn't ready to come back yet. If that's the case, it appears that his side won that battle.
The Patriots again will be forced to rely on their rookie receivers and Julian Edelman this Sunday night against much stiffer competition. The good news is that secondary talent doesn't get much better than what the Buccaneers had, and the Patriots scored 23 points last week. Still, they will have to improve immensely in the redzone.
Stephen Gostowski was relied on heavily against Tampa Bay, and you're going to need more than field goals to keep up with Matt Ryan and Julio Jones.