During a recent appearance at the New England Patriots’ home field of Gillette Stadium, Rob Gronkowski commented on the various rumors suggesting that he would soon be returning to the Patriots and ending his retirement. While “Gronk” stressed that he is content with living the life of a former NFL player, a subsequent update on the four-time All-Pro tight end suggests that many people within the Patriots’ organization are skeptical about his plans to stay retired.
While Bleacher Report NFL insider Mike Freeman only devoted a few paragraphs to Gronkowski in the latest edition of his “10-Point Stance” column on Wednesday, he succinctly emphasized that “few people,” including some “sources” within the Patriots, believe that the 30-year-old Gronkowski will stay off the field for good.
“The belief is that once the season gets going, and Gronkowski starts missing football, he will rejoin the team. It’s not just a hunch, sources say; you can count on it,” Freeman continued.
Speculation that Rob Gronkowski might not remain retired for long had been swirling since the day after he made his retirement announcement in March. As reported by USA Today, the tight end’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, said during an appearance on ESPN’s Get Up! that his client, at his age, is still a “very young man,” and that it wouldn’t be surprising if he changes his mind and chooses to play professional football once again.
“Rob is a very unique personality,” Rosenhaus added.
“If the team was struggling or they needed him at some point next year, and let’s just say hypothetically [quarterback] Tom Brady gave him a call and said ‘Rob, I need you,’ I wouldn’t be shocked if he came back to play a few games.”
A second-round pick in the 2010 NFL Draft out of Arizona, Gronkowski wrapped up his NFL career with a total of 521 receptions, 7,861 receiving yards, and 79 receiving touchdowns in nine seasons, per Pro Football Reference. Aside from his four All-Pro selections, “Gronk” also won three Super Bowls in five appearances, including the Patriots’ 13-3 victory over the Los Angeles Rams at Super Bowl LIII earlier this year.
Although Gronkowski’s recent comments were meant in part to silence the rumors regarding a potential comeback, NESN opined that the Patriots would likely appreciate it if their star tight end returns to the field and suits up for the team once again. As explained, New England is particularly thin at the tight end position at this point in the 2019 offseason, as veteran Austin Seferian-Jenkins was cut on Tuesday so that he could deal with unspecified “personal issues.”