May this be the final Wednesday on which Tom Brady has to deliver a State of the Gronk address.

With the tight end perilously close to making his 2013 debut and riding in to help a Patriots offense that’s in need of assistance Brady was asked about his feelings RE: Gronk.

“Whenever that happens who knows?” Brady said of Gronkowski’s return. “I feel like I’ve kind of talked about it a lot the past five weeks. If he is there he’s there. If he’s not he’s not. We’re going to try to win anyway.”

Gronkowski was again out at practice on Wednesday as he’s been for the first five weeks of the season. Indications are Gronkowski will be playing Sunday against the Saints. The fact Gronkowski was listed as having full participation in practice for the first time this season is the most significant development.

Still Dr. James Andrews according to Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio will be the person who ultimately clears Gronkowski to play.

The Patriots labored last Sunday against the Bengals scoring six points and going 1-for-12 on third down.

“Our job is to go out there and score so we’re not doing a great job of that” Brady said when asked his level of frustration. “The execution has to be a lot better. That’s what we’re working on. We’re trying to improve in all areas. It’s frustrating when we don’t score but we’re going to try and do better this weekend.”

Brady has been diplomatically vanilla when asked about Gronkowski’s return. Gronk’s been practicing. Gronk’s been progressing. Gronk is needed. Gronk isn’t playing. It has to be frustrating even if Brady has seen Gronkowski play hurt in the past to see the glacial pace of Gronkowski’s return.