In an interview with TMZ Sports, the veteran Tight End stated if he had to decide about season 12 right now, “it would be no”.
This might be bad news for Bucs fans, and many will be reaching for the panic button. Rob Gronkowski has been a star on the offensive unit, with both his blocking and catching ability. With 110 catches for over 1400 yards and 13 “tuddies”, Gronk has been very productive since leaving retirement.
Having already been retired once, Gronkowski’s future is understandably on the minds of many. The most recent news suggests that teammates, coaches, and fans alike must prepare for life after Gronk. The team does have Cameron Brate (quietly one of the NFL’s best in the position) and OJ Howard on the roster and could feasibly reinforce the position through the draft or free agency.
But, let’s look at what he said and when he said it. After 11 seasons, multiple injuries, including broken ribs and a punctured lung just this season, and a heartbreaking defeat at home in the Divisional Playoffs, who can blame him? Right now, the guy is beat-up, hurting physically and emotionally, and needs time to heal and relax.
Relax. Take time away. Refocus.
These are things that cannot be done during the battle of the season. Every thought and ounce of energy is devoted to the next play, winning the next battle.
Now there are no more battles to be fought. The physical and emotional highs of the game have crashed. Would anyone in Gronkowski’s position be itching to start that all over again?
Let us instead wait for Gronk to heal and rediscover his desire for the game. Then he will know for certain if he has one last season in him or if the sunset awaits.