Watch: Rob Gronkowski tears up while discussing why he retired
Rob Gronkowski spoke about his retirement on Tuesday and the possibility of him ever returning to the NFL, and the former New England Patriots tight end became extremely emotional while discussing the reasons he decided to give up football.
Gronk made a public appearance to announce he has become an advocate for a CBD product that has helped him live pain-free for the first time in a decade, and he fought back tears at one point while telling those in attendance he was “not in a good place” last season.
"I want to be clear to my fans … I was not in a good place. Football was bringing me down."
–Rob Gronkowski on his decision to retire pic.twitter.com/zEek2QNPjH
— NFL on ESPN (@ESPNNFL) August 27, 2019
“I want to be clear to my fans. I needed to recover. I was not in a good place,” Gronkowski said. “Football was bringing me down, and I didn’t like it. I was losing that joy in life.”
Gronk said he knew what he signed up for when he decided to pursue a career in the NFL, but he still felt he had to “fix myself.” He also detailed how he knew he was going to give up playing when he was in excruciating pain with a quad injury after Super Bowl LIII. The 30-year-old said the deep thigh bruise led to internal bleeding that needed to be drained.
“I got done with the game and I could barely walk,” Gronkowski said, per ESPN’s Mike Reiss. “I slept five minutes that night. I couldn’t even think. I was in tears in my bed after a Super Bowl victory. It didn’t make that much sense to me. And then, for four weeks, I couldn’t even sleep for more than 20 minutes a night. I was like, ‘Damn, this sucks.’ It didn’t feel good.”
While he said he is “very satisfied with where I am in life now,” Gronk would not rule out returning to football. He insists he feels physically well enough to keep playing but is not in the proper place mentally, though he added that he “will go back to football” if he gets the urge.
There have been plenty of rumblings about Gronkowski playing in 2019, the latest of which came from a former Patriots player who is convinced it will happen. If Gronk himself is not willing to rule it out, perhaps it is a more realistic possibility than we initially thought.