Tommy and Gronky. For two years that went by seemingly, in the blink of an eye, Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski entertained fans on and off the field. With the legendary connection bringing another Lombardi to Tampa.
In 28 games, Gronk pulled down 13 “tuddies” from his pal Tom. Now his longtime friend and TD dealer have walked into the sunset.
Having already retired once, it is likely that the sunset also awaits the 5-time Pro-Bowl TE. With 4 Championship Rings, a host of professional accolades, and the uncertainty around the future of the Buccaneers, who could blame him for calling it quits.
In a social media post on January 24, Gronkowski thanked the organization, players, and fans for an amazing year. Fans might be hopeful that his post finished with
This is going to prove to be a difficult off-season for fans of Gronk and the Bucs. The reality is that before the season starts, Gronk will turn 32. Another reality is that the veteran TE has suffered from pretty serious back and rib injuries during his 11 years in the NFL.
The question must be asked, what incentive does Rob Gronkowski have to return?
When free agency opens, Gronk will find his status listed as “UFA”. Don’t think that other teams won’t be calling his agent. Gronk showed that he still has the ability to be a dominant Tight End, excelling in blocking and receiving.
A positive for the fans in Tampa is that Gronkowski has made it very plain he loves the area, his teammates, and the fans. He has also publicly said that he might continue to play even after the retirement of Brady. But for that to be a reality, Jason Licht and the Buccaneers front office will need to be aggressive in reloading the team to continue to be a contender.
Right now, no news is good news as Gronk heals up and hopefully keeps his desire for the game. The ball is now firmly in the hands of Licht.