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NFL: Gronkowski makes it through back surgery

New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski underwent successful back surgery on Tuesday in Marina Del Rey, Calif., according to his brother.

Gordie Gronkowski Jr. tweeted the news Tuesday afternoon, adding "Goin to be scary to see u play when ur not in pain!" The procedure was performed by Dr. Robert Watkins, who also operated on Gronkowski's back in 2009 while he was at the University of Arizona.

Tuesday's surgery was not the same microdiscectomy that was performed while Gronkowski was in college.

Gronkowski has had five surgeries since November. Four were on a fractured left forearm and subsequent infection, the latest last month. With the rehab from the back surgery, it's uncertain whether Gronkowski will be ready by the start of the 2013 season.

Gronkowski has 38 touchdowns in his three seasons with the Patriots. - Reuters