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Gronkowski exits with back spasms in loss to Saints

Katelyn Mulcahy / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Tampa Bay Buccaneers tight end Rob Gronkowski exited Sunday's 36-27 loss against the New Orleans Saints with back spasms, the team announced.

Gronkowski returned to the field for the first time since suffering a rib injury in Week 3. The 32-year-old pass-catcher received just one target before leaving the contest.

The four-time All-Pro has recorded 16 receptions for 184 yards and four scores in three appearances this season.

Tampa Bay has employed a committee approach at tight end with Gronkowski sidelined, relying on Cameron Brate and O.J. Howard.

The Buccaneers entered Sunday without the services of wide receiver Antonio Brown, who is missing his second straight game with an ankle injury.

Head coach Bruce Arians didn't provide an update on Gronkowski's condition postgame but admitted the five-time Pro Bowler shouldn't have played, according to The Athletic's Greg Auman.

Arians is optimistic the squad's health can improve following the team's Week 9 bye.

Tampa Bay fell to 6-2 on the campaign following Sunday's loss.

Gronkowski exits with back spasms in loss to Saints
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