Skip to main content
Larry Brown Sports Tagline. Brown Bag it, Baby.
#pounditFriday, December 4, 2020

Articles tagged: Rob Gronkowski

Rob Gronkowski shares why he went into brief retirement

Rob Gronkowski

Rob Gronkowski went through a brief retirement from the NFL before deciding to return this season. The 31-year-old tight end gave an interview where he explained his reason for retiring before coming back.

Gronk spoke with ESPN’s Randy Moss for an interview that aired on “Monday Night Countdown” before the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ game against the Los Angeles Rams and was asked about the decision.

“I never ever gave my body a break, like in my life,” Gronk said. “I just felt like your body needs time off. I didn’t know in my head if I was going to come back or not, and I felt like the right opportunity came.”

Gronk was constantly injured while with the Patriots. He entered the NFL with back issues, and then suffered multiple broken arms, knee injuries, ankle injuries, hamstring issues, and more back problems during his career. He contemplated retirement before the 2018 season but decided to play. He had bad body language that season and was often lugging his way around the field.

Gronk really needed the year off. And if the chance to reunite with Tom Brady for a fun new venture hadn’t arisen, he might have remained retired. He already had a very promising retirement gig too.

Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski have teamed up yet again! Treat yourself or a friend with this great Tampa Fiesta shirt. You can buy it here.

This is why Rob Gronkowski did a weird spike after his touchdown

Rob Gronkowski

Rob Gronkowski finally looked like his old self during the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ 38-10 win at home over the Green Bay Packers in Week 6 of the NFL season on Sunday.

Gronk led the Bucs with five catches for 78 yards on eight targets. He also caught his first touchdown of the season. Naturally, Gronk did his spike after the score, but it looked unusual.

The tight end spiked the ball with his left hand:

Fans are used to seeing Gronk spike just about anything. He usually does it forcefully and with his right hand.

So what happened? Bucs coach Bruce Arians said after the game that Gronk is playing with a bad right shoulder.

That makes sense considering Gronk was a limited participant in practice on Wednesday due to his shoulder. The injury still didn’t prevent Gronk from doing his spike.

At least Gronkowski should feel better about his role following this big game.

Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski have teamed up yet again! Treat yourself or a friend with this great Tampa Fiesta shirt. You can buy it here.

Rob Gronkowski clearly bothered by ‘blocking tight end’ talk

Rob Gronkowski

Rob Gronkowski has been almost a non-factor in the passing game for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers through two games, and many have concluded that he is simply no longer capable of making explosive plays. Could that talk be taking a toll on the star tight end?

On Friday, Gronkowski was asked about only drawing four targets from Tom Brady in two games. He joked that he’s a blocking tight end now and didn’t come out of retirement to catch passes.

Gronk was, of course, being sarcastic. He kept driving the point home, however.

Gronkowski is clearly nowhere near the same player he was four or five years ago. The way he has looked through two games with the Bucs is similar to how he looked in 2018 with the New England Patriots. He seems to lack the speed and explosiveness needed to separate from defenders, which is why Brady is no longer funneling passes his way.

We already explained why Bucs fans should temper their expectations about Gronkowski, and Bruce Arians seemed to reaffirm that with some remarks this week. Gronk could have a few big games, but he’s no longer a true game-changer at his position.

Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski have teamed up yet again! Treat yourself or a friend with this great Tampa Fiesta shirt. You can buy it here.

Bruce Arians offers big hint on Rob Gronkowski’s role

Rob Gronkowski

There’s been some disappointment that Rob Gronkowski hasn’t been the huge offensive weapon for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers that he was in his Patriots prime. Based on what coach Bruce Arians said Tuesday, it doesn’t sound like that’s going to change.

Gronkowski has made just two catches for 11 yards in the first two games of the season. Both of those catches came in the season opener against the Saints, and he’s only been targeted four times.

On Tuesday, Arians said he was “not really” surprised by Gronk’s lack of involvement in the passing game. The coach also seemed to indicate that it probably wasn’t going to significantly change.

“He got a nice pass interference call for us. Missed him on the over route,” Arians said, via Josh Alper of ProFootballTalk. “We’re not throwing the ball 50 times to the tight ends. That’s what we have receivers for, that’s the way our offense is built. Gronk’s playing great run blocking in the fourth quarter, so I’m not concerned with his pass catches or his targets.”

In other words, expect Tom Brady to keep throwing to the likes of Mike Evans and Chris Godwin instead of Gronkowski. The tight end’s role in the Buccaneer offense is clearly more about blocking than catching passes. When Brady does throw to a tight end, O.J. Howard seems to be the preferred option, as he has five catches on nine targets so far in 2020.

There’s been a good amount of talk about Gronkowski’s disappointingly limited role in the Tampa Bay offense. Gronk isn’t the same player he used to be, and his physical limitations are becoming more apparent. Arians probably knows that, which is precisely why Gronk’s role is what it is.

Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski have teamed up yet again! Treat yourself or a friend with this great Tampa Fiesta shirt. You can buy it here.

Should the Buccaneers be concerned about Rob Gronkowski?

Rob Gronkowski

When Rob Gronkowski announced he was coming out of retirement to to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, NFL fans immediately envisioned him and Tom Brady adding to the dozens of touchdowns they connected for as teammates in New England. Through two weeks, that has not come close to happening.

The Bucs bounced back on Sunday with a convincing 31-17 win over the Carolina Panthers, but Gronkowski was once again a non-factor in the passing game. Gronk did not catch a pass and was targeted just one time. That lone target was a pass thrown way behind Gronkowski, and he and Brady did not appear to be on the same page.

In Tampa’s Week 1 loss to the New Orleans Saints, Gronkowski caught just two passes for 11 yards. He was targeted three times by Brady.

Gronkowski has played more snaps than fellow tight end O.J. Howard through two games, but Howard has drawn nine targets and caught a touchdown pass. He has played a much bigger role in the passing game than Gronk early on.

No one wants to jump to conclusions after two games, but the reality is Gronkowski is nowhere near the same player he was three-plus years ago. The same was true in his final season with the Patriots. Gronkowski caught 47 passes for 682 yards and three touchdowns in 2018. He did that while missing three games, but he very rarely abused defenders. He looked particularly slow and like he was peeling himself off the turf every time he went down. He also had an extremely difficult time separating from defenders. If you keep a close eye on him with the Bucs, you will see some of the same tendencies.

Gronkowski made huge plays in the 2018 playoffs for the Patriots, and those plays were a big reason they won another Super Bowl. However, the reports about his health after that season were a huge red flag. A year off may have helped his ailments heal, but Gronk clearly has not discovered the fountain of youth.

As long as he can stay healthy, the big plays will come for Gronkowski. But anyone who is expecting to see the 2014 or 2015 Gronk simply because the future Hall of Famer took a year off is going to be extremely disappointed.

Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski have teamed up yet again! Treat yourself or a friend with this great Tampa Fiesta shirt. You can buy it here.

Rob Gronkowski says Bruce Arians can deliver some tongue lashings

Rob Gronkowski

Bruce Arians is viewed as much more easy-going than Bill Belichick, but that does not mean the Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach is afraid to ream out his star players. Rob Gronkowksi has witnessed that first-hand after coming out of retirement.

Gronkowski took a year off from playing last year, and there was some talk earlier in the offseason that he was struggling with his conditioning. Gronk told reporters this week that Arians has come down on him hard a couple of times and isn’t afraid to deliver a tongue lashing.

“At first it was like, wow, that was pretty funny if you’re not receiving it,” Gronkowski said. “Then when you receive it you’re like, oh shoot, it’s not as funny anymore.”

Gronk said he appreciates trash talk — even if it comes from the head coach.

“The trash talking is always cool, too. That’s part of football,” he said. “There’s never gonna be just a pat on the back every single play or every single route. It’s football. You’ve gotta be mentally tough and mentally strong or you’re gonna get called out.”

Gronkowski played nine seasons with the Patriots, which is why he recently said he feels like a rookie with his new team. However, he and Tom Brady should have the chemistry down pat. Even with the conditioning issues, Arians has already set extremely high expectations for Gronk.

Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski have teamed up yet again! Treat yourself or a friend with this great Tampa Fiesta shirt. You can buy it here.

Rob Gronkowski feeling like rookie with Buccaneers

Rob Gronkowski

Rob Gronkowski is in a bit of an awkward spot with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and recognizes it.

Gronk played nine seasons for the New England Patriots and put up some incredible numbers for them. He has 521 career catches for 7,861 receiving yards and 79 career receiving touchdowns. He’s among the most accomplished tight ends in NFL history. But Gronk took last season off and has come out of retirement to join the Bucs.

Now that he’s returning to the NFL and playing for a new team, he feels like a rookie again.

“I kind of felt like a rookie with experience at first. You gotta gain the trust of your teammates, you gotta gain the respect of your teammates, you gotta go out there and learn the system,” Gronk said on Tuesday.

One thing that could balance out the rookie feeling for Gronk is the familiarity of working with Tom Brady. He’s not just playing with any quarterback, but with the one he teamed with his entire pro career. He and Brady have spent countless hours practicing with each other and know each other’s styles and preferences.

That should help Gronk adapt to his new team, because not everything has been easy for him so far.

Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski have teamed up yet again! Treat yourself or a friend with this great Tampa Fiesta shirt. You can buy it here.

Bruce Arians sets very high expectations for Rob Gronkowski

Rob Gronkowski

Rob Gronkowski took a year off from football last season, and apparently it has done him a lot of good.

Bruce Arians has been impressed with what he’s seen from Gronkowski in practice. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach told reporters on Thursday that Gronk looks healthy and back to his dominant form from years ago.

“He looks to me like he was 5 or 6 years ago,” Arians said, per Ryan Bass of CBS 10 in Tampa Bay. “He doesn’t have a gigantic elbow brace on. He’s moving, running fast again and has great body control.”

Gronkowski has suffered numerous significant injuries throughout his career, including a torn ACL and broken arm. He has also had multiple concussions and back injuries. Health has always been the biggest concern for Gronk, and it will be once again in 2020.

Interestingly enough, Arians’ comments about Gronk looking five years younger came a few days after he raised some concerns about the star tight end’s conditioning.

The Buccaneers still have O.J. Howard, so they will likely limit Gronkowski’s reps as best they can. Gronk’s reason for coming out of retirement makes it seem like the decision was somewhat sudden, but he should benefit from taking a year off to heal.

Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski have teamed up yet again! Treat yourself or a friend with this great Tampa Fiesta shirt. You can buy it here.

Rob Gronkowski struggling with conditioning?

Rob Gronkowski

Rob Gronkowski took a year off from football in 2019, and the final games and practices of his career with the New England Patriots were either in winter weather or a climate controlled environment. Needless to say, the Florida heat is much different.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians told reporters on Monday that Gronkowski is “not in Florida shape.” Arians said he doubts Gronk has ever sweat more in his life.

Summers can get pretty hot in New England, but nothing quite like Florida in August. Gronkowski also played his college ball at Arizona, but you know what they say about the desert — it’s a dry heat.

Gronkowski obviously kept working out while he wasn’t playing, but his reason for coming out of retirement makes it seem like the decision was somewhat sudden. His conditioning will certainly be worth monitoring, but that would have been the case with or without the Florida heat.

Gronk is 31 and has suffered numerous significant injuries throughout his career. Staying on the field will be one of the biggest challenges for him this season.

Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski have teamed up yet again! Treat yourself or a friend with this great Tampa Fiesta shirt. You can buy it here.

Rob Gronkowski tweets funny shot at ex-Patriots teammate Chandler Jones

Rob Gronkowski is back in the league, and now he is also back roasting his fellow players.

Arizona Cardinals linebacker Chandler Jones took to Twitter Sunday to ask his fans if he would make NFL Network’s “Top 100” players list this year.

Gronkowski, Jones’ former teammate on the New England Patriots, replied to the tweet by clowning him over the seemingly dumb question, given that Jones recorded a career-high 19.0 sacks last season (second in the NFL).

Jones and Gronkowski were teammates in New England for four seasons from 2012 to 2015, winning Super Bowl XLIX together. The former signed with the Cardinals in 2016, and the latter just came out of a one-year retirement to reunite with Tom Brady on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Granted, the three-time Pro Bowler Jones was actually left off the “Top 100” players list entirely in 2019 (though he did rank No. 28 in the 2018 edition). Gronkowski will never miss an opportunity for a roast though, but if Jones wants some material for a return shot, he definitely has plenty of it.

Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski have teamed up yet again! Treat yourself or a friend with this great Tampa Fiesta shirt. You can buy it here.