Rob Gronkowski

Rob Gronkowski Confirms 2022 Bills Talks, Insists Second Comeback Will Not Happen

Rob Gronkowski already delayed his Hall of Fame induction, returning from his 2019 WWE sabbatical to help out Tom Brady in Tampa. Both Brady and Gronkowski retired in 2022 — Brady for the first time, Gronk for a second — but the All-Decade tight end did consider playing with another team last year.

Gronk confirmed he spoke with the Bills about a 2022 agreement and said he only considered relocating for a Buffalo pact. Prior to attending college at Arizona, the future first-ballot Hall of Famer grew up in the Buffalo area.

My options were out on the table at that moment for about three weeks throughout the free agency period,” Gronkowski said, via The Athletic’s Jeff Howe (subscription required). “I talked to [the Bills] just a little bit. I just saw what my options were. I knew I probably wasn’t going to play football again, but I just wanted to see the options. I didn’t want to shut the door or anything.

I just talked to the Bills. If Tom stayed retired and I was willing to play another year of football and to go all in, I think the Buffalo Bills would have been the team for sure.”

Brady unretired just before the legal tampering period began last year, which seemingly means Gronk’s Bills chats came after his longtime quarterback announced he would return to the Buccaneers. Though, illegal tampering obviously occurs regularly as well. Buffalo also pursued Gronkowski in 2021, to no avail. Amid its historic roster-retention effort, the Bucs reupped their top tight end on a one-year, $8MM deal. The Bills signed ex-Bucs tight end O.J. Howard last year, though they cut him before the season began. Buffalo also extended Dawson Knox late last summer, solidifying its long-term tight end plan.

Gronkowski, as many expected he would, discussed another unretirement with the Bucs during the season. Nothing came together, and Brady missed his longtime teammate during one of his worst pro seasons. As Brady-Raiders talk surfaced last month, talk of another Gronk comeback naturally re-entered the equation.

With Brady retiring for a second time, Gronk shot down the notion he will play again. The former Patriots All-Pro and Bucs starter will be Canton-eligible a year before Brady.

No, no. I’m done, man,” Gronkowski said. “Tom is not reopening that door. I don’t know. Maybe he is. I don’t know.”

Latest On Raiders, Derek Carr

The Raiders will start Jarrett Stidham today in what will be his first NFL regular season start and the unofficial beginning of the post-Derek Carr era at quarterback. Vegas made headlines this week when they benched the latter for the remainder of the season.

That has led to the widespread expectation that Carr will be traded during the coming offseason. The 31-year-old has stepped away from the team as they begin the transition away from him, and, presumably, the process of finding a suitable destination to send him in the near future. Carr has a no-trade clause, so the possibility remains that a release allowing him to become a free agent will be the ultimate outcome of this situation.

On that point, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network confirms that Vegas is “expected to explore trade options” for the three-time Pro Bowler. That comes as little surprise, given the organization’s commitment to replacing him – one which was reportedly driven by owner Mark Davis – along with the market which could materialize for a signal-caller of his experience and with his contract situation. Carr’s three-year extension signed last spring will see his $41.9MM 2023 salary become guaranteed on February 15, creating the narrow window in which a deal is expected to officially take place.

However, Vincent Bonsignore of the Las Vegas Review-Journal tweets that both Carr and the Raiders could agree to push back that deadline as a means of making the trade process smoother. Much is still to be determined between now and the onset of the offseason, in any event, which also raises the possibility that the two sides could decide against a separation. The 49ers granting Jimmy Garoppolo permission to seek a trade, then later retaining him, represents a recent example of such a development.

The fact that Carr previously made public his intention of only ever playing for the Raiders is not expected to be a factor in this case, Rapoport notes. The former second-rounder has no intention of retiring at the end of the year, and is reportedly of the belief that “he has his best football ahead of him.” While his 2022 performance – along with that of the Raiders as a whole – strongly suggests otherwise, Carr will nevertheless likely be a key player in the coming offseason QB market.

His expected departure will also, of course, leave Vegas in need of at least a short-term Carr replacement. Among the bridge candidates are Garoppolo, but also Tom Brady. The latter has guided the Buccaneers to another NFC South title, but is not expected to return to Tampa this spring. That – coupled with the recent Carr developments – has led to many speculating that Brady could reunite with Josh McDaniels by joining the Raiders, as he came close to doing in 2020. As the Boston Globe’s Ben Volin writes, a Brady-to-Vegas contract could also accompany another un-retirement from tight end Rob Gronkowski (something which nearly took place in time for this season).

Stidham will use the final two contests of the campaign, one in which the Raiders are all-but eliminated from playoff contention, to audition for playing time in 2023, but regardless of his performances, Vegas will be a team to watch as the QB landscape takes shape in the coming months.

Rob Gronkowski Discussed Second Unretirement With Buccaneers

When Rob Gronkowski retired for a second time, many suspected the June transaction would also lead to another temporary step away from football. The future Hall of Fame tight end made an effort to postpone his Canton timeline again recently.

Gronkowski, 33, contacted the Buccaneers about unretiring last month, and Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times reports the team and the two-year Buccaneer engaged in several conversations about a potential return. The Bucs both gave Gronk an option of returning on the active roster or the practice squad, the latter in the increasingly popular ramp-up scenario, per Stroud.

While the 11-year veteran said he had been working out on his own and cited boredom with not playing football — a prediction that was not too difficult to make given his past — he will remain retired at this point. Gronk had said in July he was done, and a September report also indicated he was staying retired. Now? The door appears slightly ajar to another return.

It was more of a conversation than anything else,” Bucs coach Todd Bowles said, via Stroud. “Usually, when you have to think about playing, you probably don’t want to play. When it’s just a discussion, I didn’t think much of it at the time.”

The Bucs’ offense could certainly use all the help available. It has dropped from second in scoring in 2021 to 28th this year, falling from 30.1 points per game to 17.6. Tom Brady‘s QBR has plummeted outside the top 20, this coming after he led the league in touchdown passes and passing yards last season — en route to second-team All-Pro honors. Brady’s QBR figure is his worst in the 17-season QBR era, and his timing with wideouts — particularly Mike Evans — has been off.

Tampa Bay has not effectively replaced Gronkowski, who totaled 802 receiving yards — his most since 2017 — last season. Gronk’s first unretirement, which keyed a 2020 trade with the Patriots, played a significant role in the Bucs claiming their second Super Bowl title two years ago. Injury issues led to his 2019 exit, and the four-time All-Pro pass catcher did miss five games due to injuries — fractured ribs and a punctured lung — last season. The All-Decade performer remained one of the league’s best tight ends, however, and has proven impossible to replace.

Although longtime Bucs tight end Cameron Brate remains on the roster, a scary concussion scene paused his season. Brate has been limited to nine games. Rookie Cade Otton leads Bucs tight ends with 357 receiving yards. Brady’s QBR dipped during Gronk’s first retirement as well, and while Evans and Chris Godwin helped reinvigorate the all-time great, Brady’s longtime go-to weapon played a lead role in doing so as well.

News of Gronk’s unretirement attempt does come not long after he said Brady’s best place next season may be with him at FOX. Should Brady retire, he has a 10-year FOX agreement waiting for him. This latest Gronk-NFL connection, however, keeps the door on his own career. Gronk has said at points he only wishes to team up with Brady, though he was connected to the Bengals and Bills this offseason. With the 23rd-year veteran open to playing in 2023 and unlikely to re-sign with the Bucs if he does decide to stay in the NFL, Gronk — even ahead of what would be his age-34 season — could be an interesting variable in 2023’s free agent market.

2022 Expected To Be Tom Brady’s Final Season; Latest On Rob Gronkowski

For a few weeks, it seemed as if 2021 was Buccaneers QB Tom Brady‘s last season as a player. The future Hall of Famer announced his retirement on February 1, only to reverse that decision just before the start of the new league year on March 13. As Ian Rapoport of writes, however, Brady is expected to hang up the cleats after the 2022 campaign.

This should not be especially surprising. After all, Brady did retire for a brief time just months ago, he has long stated that he wants to play until he is 45 — he just hit that milestone on August 3 — and he is out of contract at season’s end. Back in July, Brady acknowledged he was winding down, saying, “I would say it’s year to year. Could this be my last year? Absolutely. Could I change my mind? Absolutely. I’ve realized I don’t have five years left. I want to do it my way. I want to give it everything I got and see where I’m at. My body feels really good.”

Brady took an 11-day hiatus in the middle of this year’s training camp, which was planned but which nonetheless generated countless headlines, like most things that Brady does. We knew that Brady spent that time at a Bahamas resort with his family, and as Rapoport notes, Brady had promised his wife while he was still retired that he would vacation with the family in August for the first time in a long time. His absence amounted to nothing more than a fulfillment of that promise.

Of course, given Brady’s competitive nature, a return for the 2023 season remains a possibility. One source close to the 15-time Pro Bowler confirmed as much to Rapoport, though it presently seems more likely that, regardless of who is hoisting the Lombardi Trophy at season’s end, Brady will begin working as a Fox analyst on a healthy 10-year, $375MM contract. If he does choose to keep playing, he would be free to sign with any team, and while one source reiterated the affection and respect that Brady has for the Buccaneers’ organization, that source did not say that Brady would only play for Tampa Bay.

As for one of Brady’s favorite targets over the years, Rob Gronkowski? Despite Gronk’s recent adamance that he is retired for good, the Bucs reportedly were holding out hope that, if they are in the middle of a playoff chase this season, the enigmatic tight end could be convinced to return. However, as Adam Schefter of writes, Tampa Bay believes Gronkowski is truly done with football.

The four-time First-Team All-Pro did post 55 catches for 802 yards and six TDs in just 12 games last year. If the Bucs are indeed in the mix for another Lombardi this season, they and Brady may well check in to see if Gronk might consider a second unretirement.

Rob Gronkowski: Second Unretirement Will Not Happen

When Rob Gronkowski retired for a second time, even his agent suspected there could be a chance at another return if Tom Brady made a midseason pitch. Gronk attempted to shoot down Drew Rosenhaus’ speculation.

The future Hall of Fame tight end, who ended his first retirement to reunite with Brady in Tampa in 2020, said he would not unretire for a second time.

I would answer, obviously, the greatest quarterback of all time, ask him how he’s doing, tell him I’m doing good. But I wouldn’t go back to football; no,” Gronkowski said (via’s Mike Reiss; video link), when asked how he would respond to a Brady request for a second unretirement.

I’m done with football. Love the game. Definitely blessed with all the opportunities the game of football has given me, and relationships — obviously here in New England for nine seasons and down in Tampa for two. But done with football and stepping my feet into the business world, business ventures, and just seeing what’s out there and where I can find my place.”

Gronkowski initially unretired in April 2020, with the Bucs acquiring his rights for a fourth-round pick. The All-Decade performer became instrumental to Tampa Bay’s 2020 Super Bowl LV run and re-signed with the team on a one-year, $8MM deal that included incentives — ones Brady helped him reach late in the season. Gronkowski’s 802 receiving yards last season — in just 12 games — were the most he had accumulated since his 2017 All-Pro campaign.

Gronk, 33, was never able to fully capitalize on his talents, being tied to a Patriots extension signed in 2012 all the way through his 2020 Bucs debut season. (Though, the popular ex-NFLer has found a few other income streams.) It is unclear what the Bucs offered this offseason, but it was not enough to delay another retirement. While Gronk cannot be completely moved off the NFL radar, especially after Brady put off his own retirement to play again, the Bucs are set to enter training camp with Cameron Brate and two Day 3 rookies at tight end.

Bruce Arians Discusses Coaches, New Role, TE Options

Bruce Arians has made it clear that his decision to step down as Buccaneers head coach wasn’t because of tension with his franchise quarterback. Rather, Arians has continually mentioned his desire for a clear succession plan when it came to the coaching staff, and he saw a golden opportunity to pass on the reigns to Todd Bowles.

“No it really wasn’t hard,” Arians said during a recent appearance on the “Eye Test For Two” podcast (h/t to “[Winning a championship is] great, but succession was really, really big for me. It didn’t happen in Arizona. It meant the world to me to make sure 34 families had jobs beyond February. The Super Bowl wasn’t guaranteed, there’s nothing guaranteed, but now our guys have 5-year contracts. Todd’s got a 5-year deal and all the assistant coaches are set for the future.

“I was probably done anyway, so why not do it now? I know a lot of people think the Hall of Fame is the end-all, be-all and if it happens, that would be the most unbelievable thing to be able to wear a gold jacket. But this meant more to me personally.”

When Arians stepped away from his gig, it was assumed that the move was influenced by Tom Brady‘s decision to renege on his retirement and return for the 2022 campaign. Both sides have said that wasn’t the case, and Arians even said he would have reconsidered had he known Brady’s intentions before making his own decision. Passing on the job to Bowles seemed like a natural move, especially with offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich still around to direct the offense.

With Arians no longer roaming the sideline, the long-time coach has transitioned into more of an advisory role. When Arians stepped down, his new role was described as “Senior Football Consultant.” The former coach indicated that he’ll still be interacting with both the coaches and the players, and he’ll naturally be able to take on a lesser role when it comes to game day:

“It’s a ‘What do you think?’ job,” Arians said. “Everybody asks me what do I think and they know they’re getting a brutally honest answer, whether it be [owner] Joel Glazer, [general manaher] Jason Licht, Todd Bowles or Byron Leftwich. It’s been fun going to practice, watching and learning some more, watching us change, looking at the new guys. Man, that draft class is going to be a home run. Looking forward to getting to camp.

“That’s the beauty of my job. I get to be in the locker room, get to be around the coaches every day and still have a big hand in the draft. The relationships were always the biggest thing for me. Building a new team, watching the new guys come in. Now, Sundays might be different sitting upstairs. I might be able to still holler loud enough to cuss out the refs from up there.”

Since he’ll no longer be responsible for devising a game plan, Arians will have more of an opportunity to contribute to team building. One of his more pressing issues will be figuring out how to proceed following tight end Rob Gronkowski‘s decision to retire. Fortunately, Arians doesn’t sound too worried about the team’s depth at the position.

“It’s a step back, that’s for sure,” Arians said. “[H]e’s a Hall of Fame player. But I really like the room right now. I love the young kids we’ve got in there and Cam Brate’s a good veteran player that Tom really trusts. Now, he’s not Gronk. That size and what he brings as a blocker and receiver I think is unmatched. You don’t replace that guy, but we also have Codey McElroy … I think it’s time for him to break out as a receiver.”

Rob Gronkowski Intends To Retire

Linked to a possible Buccaneers agreement ahead of training camp, Rob Gronkowski had said another retirement was a true consideration. The future Hall of Fame tight end is following through on that, telling NFL reporter Jordan Schultz he is retiring after 11 seasons (Twitter link). Gronkowski subsequently announced his decision (via Instagram).

Gronkowski, 33, played a key role on the past two Bucs teams, re-emerging from a 2019 retirement to join Tom Brady in relocating to Tampa. His exit will leave the Bucs shorthanded at tight end. O.J. Howard joined the Bills in March. Gronk, who secured a spot on the NFL’s 100th Anniversary team before his Bucs stint began, will leave the game as one of his era’s defining players.

I will now be going back into my retirement home, walking away from football again with my head held high knowing I gave it everything I had, good or bad, every time I stepped out on the field,” Gronkowski said. “The friendships and relationships I have made will last forever, and I appreciate every single one of my teammates and coaches for giving everything they had as well.

From retirement, back to football and winning another championship and now back to chilling out, thank you to all.”

The Bucs learned of Gronk’s decision last week, Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times tweets. This transaction will lead to a $5MM 2022 dead-money charge. Gronkowski has resumed his career after this sort of announcement before, and his agent, Drew Rosenhaus, said he would not be surprised if his client answered a call from Brady to return during the season (Twitter link via’s Adam Schefter). For now, however, Gronk retirement No. 2 is upon us.

Barely two weeks ago, the Bucs were confident they could convince Gronkowski to return for another season — one that could end up being Brady’s true finale. But the soon-to-be 45-year-old quarterback will once again soldier on without his top NFL sidekick. Gronk’s 2019 exit resulted in Brady having a down season, his Patriots finale. While the Bucs have positioned the legendary (and recently unretired) QB better in terms of weaponry than the Pats did in the late 2010s, Tampa Bay relied on Gronk at points during its Brady-fueled ascent over the past two seasons.

A four-time first-team All-Pro, Gronk will be a surefire candidate for first-ballot Canton induction in 2027 — assuming he does not again unretire. He added 13 more touchdown receptions to his career ledger, which stands at 92 (third-most by a tight end). His 17 touchdowns in 2011 remain the single-season tight end record. That showing prompted the Pats to give their breakout star a six-year, $54MM extension in 2012. That deal ended up covering his entire New England career and became an issue for both Gronk and the tight end market as a whole.

In terms of playoff scoring, Gronk is on his own tier between Jerry Rice and the field. The former Pats and Bucs pass catcher’s 15 postseason touchdown catches lead all non-Rice performers by at least three. Gronk has scored two touchdowns in multiple Super Bowls, including Super Bowl LV as a Buccaneer, and came through with a pivotal deep grab to help the Patriots secure their sixth championship three seasons ago.

Gronk will fall short of the career totals amassed by the likes of Tony Gonzalez and Antonio Gates, but for sheer dominance, he rivals not only any tight end to play the game but just about any pass catcher. The 2010 second-round pick’s emergence helped Brady remain a top-tier quarterback into his 40s. The 6-foot-6 cog posted four 1,000-yard seasons, collected four Super Bowl rings and won Comeback Player of the Year honors in 2014. Despite Gronk’s shorter career compared to some of his positional peers, the Arizona alum’s 32 100-yard games are the most by a tight end in NFL history.

Injuries, however, plagued the gregarious superstar for most of his career. Gronk suffered a high ankle sprain in the 2011 AFC championship game, limiting him for Super Bowl XLVI, and missed time due to a fractured forearm in 2012. After remaining relatively healthy from 2014-15, following a 2013 ACL tear, Gronkowski sustained a herniated disk that knocked him out for much of the 2016 season. He missed part of the 2017 AFC title game due to a concussion and was hobbled during the ’18 campaign. Upon returning from the 2019 sabbatical — one that involved extensive WWE work — Gronk surprisingly did not miss a game for the 2020 Bucs. But he missed five games due to a rib injury last season.

That string of 2010s injuries knocked the then-Patriots dynamo off his perch as the game’s unquestioned top tight end, but he proved effective in spurts in 2018 and with the Bucs, who suddenly feature a glaring void on offense. Tampa Bay still has Cameron Brate returning. After seeing Howard and Gronkowski eclipse his profile for years, Brate — a ninth-year Buccaneer who posted 500-plus-yard seasons back in 2016 and ’17 — could return as a starter. The Bucs also drafted Day 3 tight ends Cade Otton (Round 4) and Ko Kieft (Round 6) this year. If the Bucs want another vet to replace Gronkowski, Eric Ebron, Jimmy Graham, Jared Cook and Kyle Rudolph are free agents.

A year after the Bucs went into a season with two All-Decade-teamers (Gronkowski and Antonio Brown) supplementing Pro Bowlers Mike Evans and Chris Godwin, Brate stands to again be an important player ahead of his age-31 campaign. Tampa Bay was hellbent on continuity in 2021, retaining its entire Super Bowl core. This year, the team is set to be without Gronkowski, Brown, Bruce Arians, Ndamukong Suh, Jason Pierre-Paul, Ali Marpet, Alex Cappa and Jordan Whitehead.

Buccaneers Confident They Will Re-Sign Rob Gronkowski

The status of 33-year-old tight end Rob Gronkowski has been a bit of a rollercoaster this offseason. Back in April, there were reports that Gronkowski was both leaning toward returning and claiming he’s not ready to return within a five-day period. A month later, Gronkowski refused to even take the question seriously, joking that he would return if the Buccaneers signed retired wide receiver Julian Edelman, a former teammate of Gronkowski and Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady

According to Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times, though, the Buccaneers are confident they will re-sign Gronkowski before training camp. They don’t expect to land their tight end of the past two years before mandatory minicamp, assuming Gronkowski will want to continue enjoying his offseason. Gronkowski has been mulling retirement for the second time in his career, but the Buccaneers don’t feel too much pressure as he has reportedly said that, if he does return, he would only play for Tampa Bay.

In terms of affordability, the Buccaneers have about $10.67MM of remaining cap space, according to, and Gronkowski’s past two deals with the team have only been for $9.25MM and $8MM. Gronkowski was third on the team in receiving yards last year behind only star receivers Chris Godwin and Mike Evans. Without Gronkowski, Tampa Bay would likely turn to Cameron Brate to start at tight end. Likely in anticipation of Gronkowski’s possible departure, the Buccaneers did draft two tight ends this year, selecting Washington’s Cade Otton in the fourth round and Minnesota’s Ko Kieft in the sixth.

For now, Tampa Bay is giving Gronkowski the time and space he needs, counting on his competitive nature and relationship with Brady to bring him back to football. Gronkowski will likely continue to take his time, returning on his own schedule, if the Buccaneers’ suspicions are correct, or hanging up his cleats, if they’re not.

NFC Rumors: Gronkowski, Bears, Dean, Graham, Lions, Patterson

In an interview with Sports Illustrated last weekend, free agent tight end Rob Gronkowski was asked about the potential for his return. In reality, the question and answer were played off a bit as a joke.

The reporter specifically asked Gronkowski if he would return should Tampa Bay sign retired wide receiver Julian Edelman. Gronkowski didn’t hesitate to commit to returning for a full season alongside Edelman were that to occur. Realistically, if Gronkowski is to return for another season with the Buccaneers, CBS Sports’ Jonathan Jones expects that decision to be made after minicamps.

Here are a few more rumors from around the NFC, starting with a rumor out of the Windy City:

  • In the 2022 NFL Draft, the Bears heavily addressed their offensive line, drafting four offensive linemen and signing one more undrafted free agent lineman. Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune expects the team to continue trying to add to the group, saying that they should be on the lookout specifically for “an experienced option to compete for the right guard job.” Biggs also expects Chicago to target veterans at defensive line and wide receiver over the next few weeks.
  • New Eagles linebacker Nakobe Dean was expected to be a first round pick during last month’s Draft. Dean was the victim of one of the least predictable slides of all time, falling down to the third round of the Draft due to concerns over his health. Well, according to EJ Smith of the Philadelphia Inquirer, Dean has been a full participant in the team’s rookie minicamp, making an effort to disprove the notion many teams held that he would potentially miss his entire rookie season with a pectoral injury.
  • Two games into the 2021 NFL season, Eagles defensive end Brandon Graham suffered a season-ending tear of his Achilles tendon. Well, according to Eliot Shorr-Parks of, Graham says he feels like the injury never even happened. He will return to the field with no restrictions this preseason. This wouldn’t be the first time Graham has made a full recovery from a long-term injury. He tore his ACL 13 games into his rookie season. Despite the serious injury, Graham has become the impact player he is today, the same player he is expecting to be this upcoming season.
  • Two Thursdays ago, the Lions were more than happy to walk away from the 2022 Draft with the hometown defensive end from Michigan, Aidan Hutchinson. If things had not worked out so perfectly for Detroit, though, and Hutchinson had been told to pack his bags for Duval, Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated reports that the Lions would have selected the player Jacksonville actually did select, Georgia defensive lineman Travon Walker.
  • Falcons wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson has always been a bit of a swiss army knife. He has made impressive plays in the kick and punt return games and, while performing mainly as a wide receiver for most of his career, Patterson has displayed the ability to run the ball when required, as well. After signing to join the Falcons last year, Patterson was asked to run the ball more than ever before, serving as Atlanta’s top rusher in terms of both attempts and yards. Well, Michael Fabiano of Sports Illustrated quoted ESPN’s Michael Rothstein stating his belief that Patterson will return to his primary position, expecting the 31-year old to spend more time at wide receiver than running back next year. Whether this would be a result of offseason additions like free agent signing Damien Williams or newly drafted Keaontay Ingram or if Patterson just requested a return to his natural role, Patterson is expected to take fewer snaps at running back next season.

Latest On TE Rob Gronkowski

While Tom Brady will be back for another season with the Buccaneers, it’s uncertain if his tight end will stick around. Speaking to TMZ Sports, Rob Gronkowski said he was unsure if he’ll play in 2022.

“Right now, I’m not ready to get back out on that field,” Gronkowski said (via “I’m not ready to commit to the game of football right now.”

“Even in your 30s, I mean, you just can’t just slack it and just be 50% all-in, then you’re going to get caught off with the game and it’s going to just spit you right out. You’ve got to be fully dedicated. I’m not ready to do that yet, I’m not going to sign a contract if I’m not fully ready.”

Gronk has obviously flirted with retirement in the past, sitting out the entire 2019 season. He reunited with Brady in Tampa Bay for the 2020 and 2021 seasons, but the tight end has refused to commit to a 2022 campaign. Brady’s retirement and unretirement has fueled talks that Gronkowski could give it one last go, but it also wouldn’t be surprising if the player just decides to hang up his cleats.

Despite only appearing in only 12 games, Gronkowski managed to top his 2020 numbers this past year, finishing with 55 receptions for 802 yards and six touchdowns. With O.J. Howard heading to Buffalo, Cameron Brate currently leads the depth chart at tight end.

While the 32-year-old didn’t want to discuss his own future, he was more than eager to speak about Brady’s offseason. The tight end admitted that he wasn’t surprised when Brady announced that he was in fact returning for another season in 2022.

“I knew he was going to come back, but I didn’t think he was going to come back this year, to tell you the truth,” he said. “I thought he was going to come back in a year, spend some time with his family.”