Rob Gronkowski‘s decision to retire has been met with more skepticism than perhaps any retirement announcement ever. Since the day he announced his intent to walk away from the game, rumors have swirled that he won’t stay away for long.
It’s been heavily speculated that he’ll end up missing the first part of the season and then come back for the stretch run with the Patriots. Even Gronk’s own agent, Drew Rosenhaus, has suggested that he’ll come back. The only one who hasn’t contributed to any of the talk has been the legendary tight end himself. Speaking at a recent charity event, Gronkowski shot down any talk of a return, per Mike Reiss of ESPN.com (Twitter link).
When a reporter asked Gronk if he wanted all the comeback rumors to be put to rest, he replied “you can put them to rest, yes.” “I’m feeling good. Good place,” he added. Gronkowski did acknowledge that even his own denials probably won’t end the speculation, joking that “whatever I say, it doesn’t matter.”
Gronkowski has been moved to the reserve/retired list by the Patriots, and if he wants to come back he won’t be able to just wait until the very end of the season or the playoffs. If he isn’t moved off the list by Week 13, he won’t be eligible to return for the 2019 season. While he sure seems to be enjoying retirement, it still won’t be at all surprising if he changes his mind. If New England’s offense struggles without him, it could provide extra motivation for a return.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.