The New England Patriots' other position-redefining young tight end, Aaron Hernandez, has been some combination of injured and disappointing for most of 2012, and his ankle injury will keep him out of the Pats' London matchup with the St. Louis Rams on Sunday. That means the Rams will only have to deal with Rob Gronkowski, who... well, he has 35 receptions for 434 yards and five touchdowns in a little less than half a season.
Is this good news for the Rams? Yes. Hernandez's replacements, Michael Hoomanawanui and Daniel Fells, were good enough to start for the Rams in 2010, but somewhat less good than Aaron Hernandez.
Is this extremely good news for the Rams? Probably not, seeing as the Patriots have been able to score an NFL-high 217 points through seven games even with Hernandez limited. But with the Rams' No. 1 option, Danny Amendola, nearly as certain a miss for Week 8, they could use every possible advantage they can maintain.
Like home field advantage. Which, unfortunately, they'll only have in spirit as a stadium filled with Londoners cheers on a team named after the guys who threw them out of the New World.