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Patriots injury report: Brady absent from practice; Gronkowski limited

Rob Gronkowski #87 of the New England Patriots celebrates with Tom Brady #12 against the Indianapolis Colts into the end zone for a touchdown in the first half at Gillette Stadium on November 18, 2012 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.
Rob Gronkowski #87 of the New England Patriots celebrates with Tom Brady #12 against the Indianapolis Colts into the end zone for a touchdown in the first half at Gillette Stadium on November 18, 2012 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images

The success of the New England Patriots season depends on the health of two key players on the offensive side of the football. One of those players is quarterback Tom Brady. According to a report by ESPN, the Hall of Fame quarterback was the only big-name player absent from practice Thursday.

Brady was later added to the injury report with a calf injury, but is expected to be prepared and ready for the season opener against the Miami Dolphins. The injury is not expected to be serious, but the team did re-sign quarterback McLeod Bethel-Thompson to the practice squad as a second quarterback alongside Jimmy Garoppolo at practice.

The other player important to the offense is tight end Rob Gronkowski. After announcing that he will play on Sunday, the big tight end was limited in practice on Wednesday and Thursday, but whether he plays against the Dolphins will be left up to head coach Bill Belichick. Other players limited in practice but expected to be ready on Sunday are DL Michael Buchanan, DT Chris Jones and DT Sealver Siliga.

First-round draft pick Dominique Easley was not listed on the injury report and it looks as though Patriots fans will finally see the product of Florida in his first NFL action. A source told the Boston Herald that he strongly believes that the defensive lineman will make his debut in the regular-season opener. The team is expected to make the final call on Easley before they travel to Miami on Friday afternoon. Everyone else on the team is expected to be available for action.