Detroit safety Glover Quin thought about the question for a second: Can the Lions take anything from the way Jacksonville shut down Rob Gronkowski last week and apply it to Sunday night’s game against the New England Patriots?

“Ummm,” Quin said, trying to suppress a devious smile. “Nah.”

In two games against the Jaguars over the last eight months, Gronkowski has just three catches for 36 yards. He caught two passes for 15 yards in New England’s loss Sunday, when he was targeted just four times, and had only a single reception for 21 yards in a playoff win in January.

Gronkowski appeared on his first injury report of the season Thursday with an ankle injury and was a limited participant in a non-padded session.

The severity of Gronkowski’s injury is unknown but many other things are clear. In 17 games against teams not from Jacksonville since the start of the 2017 season, Gronkowski has 91 catches for 1,404 yards and 12 touchdowns, or an average of more than five catches and 82 yards per game.

“You’d say superstar players are going to get (theirs),” Quin said. “They don’t go off every game. They go off a lot of them. They don’t go off every game, but they do demand a lot of attention, so we’ve just got to know where he’s at at all times and make sure we keep that in mind.”

The Jaguars’ blueprint for defending Gronkowski isn’t entirely new but their execution of it has been sublime.

Last week Jacksonville used a variety of coverages, sometimes double-teaming him, occasionally using a cornerback on him but often letting safety Tashaun Gipson cover him one-on-one.

Listed at 6-foot-6 and 268 pounds, Gronkowski is the most unique tight end in the NFL because of his blend of size, physicality and athleticism. He’s an imposing red-zone threat who towers over cornerbacks and too good downfield to match up with a linebacker.

“Gronk’s a beast cause obviously he went to the University of Arizona and we produce beasts,” Lions linebacker and fellow Arizona alum Marquis Flowers joked. “But he’s a great player. He produces. I don’t know what other defenses try to do. All I know is we can do what we’re going to be coached to do this week, and go out there, except the challenge and compete.”

With Darius Slay unlikely to play Sunday because of a concussion, the Lions have no cornerbacks who can cover Gronkowski one-on-one for an extended period They might be better off rotating coverages and personnel.

“He’s a good player and guys like that are hard to stop,” linebacker Christian Jones said. “You’ve just got to do your best to limit what they do.”

Quin said the Lions will be “tuned in to” Gronkowski wherever he goes on the field, and Jones said limiting his impact will be key to the Lions pulling off the upset.

“He’s been with Tom for a lot of years so they have a good rapport on the field,” Quin said. “He’s big, he’s physical, he’s faster than people think. He runs kind of weird but he moves. He moves fast. He’s not real shifty but you don’t have to be when you’re that big.”

PRACTICE REPORT: Limited at practice on Thursday for the Patriots were wide receiver Josh Gordon (hamstring), cornerback Eric Rowe (groin) offensive tackle Marcus Cannon (calf), and defensive backs Nate Ebner (hip) and Keion Crossen (hamstring).

Running back Sony Michel (knee) and defensive lineman Deatrich Wise Jr. (finger) were both full participants.

THE PATRIOTS are the NFL’s second-most valuable team according to annual rankings released by Forbes magazine. The Patriots are worth $3.8 billion, which puts them second behind the Dallas Cowboys ($5 billion).

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