Gronk calls it quits

Rob Gronkowski

Gronk calls it quits
April 04
01:00 2019

New England Patriots tight end, Rob Gronkowski, has announced his retirement from the National Football League.  Gronkowski, who helped the Patriots to three Super Bowl titles and has solidified himself as one of the best players to ever play his position, made the world aware of his retirement last Sunday at the age of 29 on an Instagram post.

Gronkowski put up some eye-popping numbers throughout his nine-year career, while also dealing with multiple injuries. He publicly contemplated retirement after last season before returning to the Patriots and said he would think about his football future following the New England’s Super Bowl victory over the Los Angeles Rams in February.

“It all started at 20 years old on stage at the NFL draft when my dream came true, and now here I am about to turn 30 in a few months with a decision I feel is the biggest of my life so far,” Gronkowski wrote on Instagram. “I will be retiring from the game of football today.

“I am so grateful for the opportunity that Mr. Kraft and Coach Belichick gave to me when drafting my silliness in 2010,” Gronkowski wrote. “My life experiences over the last nine years have been amazing both on and off the field. The people I have [met], the relationships I have built, the championships I have been a part of, I just want to thank the whole New England Patriots organization for every opportunity I have been [given]. … Thank you for everyone accepting who I am and the dedication I have put into my work to be the best player I could be.”

It was hard for me to accept that Gronkowski has decided to make this decision. I am not a Patriots fan by any stretch of the imagination, but it was something about Gronk that made fans gravitate toward him. He played the game with such joy, ferocity and skill, you had no choice but to root for the guy.

He will not only be missed by Brady and Belichick, he will be missed by fans just as much. Gronkowski’s passion for the game was evident on every snap that he lined up for. He routinely played hurt and often was still better than his opponents. His efforts will more than likely land him with a bust in Canton, Ohio, in the NFL Hall of Fame.

During his nine-year career, Gronk totaled 521 catches for 7,861 yards and 79 touchdowns. Those are great numbers for a tight end that only played 16 games in a season twice. He was also selected to five Pro Bowls and was named All-Pro four times in his career.

“In the nine years that I have known Rob Gronkowski, I have never known him to have a bad day,” Kraft said in a statement issued by the Patriots. “He always has a youthful exuberance about him and is a joy to be around. As a player, he earned the respect of his coaches and teammates for his hard work, preparation, selfless attitude and the sheer dominance of his game.”

It is amazing that Gronk was able to stay with the Patriots for his entire career. He seems to embody characteristics that are against what the Patriots seem to stand for. He has been known for his extreme partying and yet was still retained on the team, which speaks to his value as a player.

Gronkowski is arguably the best tight end to ever play in the NFL. He was a complete player that was just as feared running routes as he was blocking for a running play. The entire AFC will be happy that he has retired, but he will be a loss for the NFL.

Thank you for nine great years, Gronkowski.

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