Tampa Bay Buccaneers tight finish Rob Gronkowski is once more calling it a profession.
Gronkowski, 33, introduced his retirement Tuesday by way of social media.
I need to thank the entire total top quality Buccaneers group for a tremendous experience, trusting me to return again to play and assist construct a championship staff. I’ll now be going again into my retirement house, strolling away from soccer once more with my head held excessive understanding I gave it all the pieces I had, good or dangerous, each time I stepped out on the sector, “Gronkowski mentioned in his assertion.
“The friendships and relationships I’ve made will final eternally, and I respect each single one in all my teammates and coaches for giving all the pieces they’d as effectively. From retirement, again to soccer and profitable one other championship and now again to chilling out, thanks to all. “
Nevertheless, Gronkowski’s agent informed ESPN’s Adam Schefter that he would not be stunned if his shopper might be coaxed out of retirement for a second time by Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady.
“It would not shock me if Tom Brady calls him throughout the season to return again and Rob solutions the decision,” Drew Rosenhaus informed Schefter. “That is simply my opinion, however I would not be stunned if Rob comes again throughout the season or subsequent season.”
Gronkowski had beforehand retired after the 2018 season with the New England Patriots due to accidents. The 2010 second-round draft pick of Arizona largely credit Brady for setting the expectations for his profession, and it was Brady who summoned him out of retirement in 2020 to play for the Bucs.
Although their personalities differed immensely – Gronkowski playful, fun-loving and by no means identified to have a foul day by coaches or teammates; Brady, methodical and intense – they developed a detailed connection each on the sector and off.
Gronkowski is the second key member of the Buccaneers’ offense to retire this yr, following guard Ali Marpet, who retired in February. Brady himself introduced his retirement in February solely to unretire 40 days later.
Gronkowski’s breakthrough yr got here in 2011, when he set the NFL document for many receiving touchdowns by a good finish with 17. The yr earlier than, Gronk unveiled what turned often called his signature transfer – the “Gronk Spike,” the place he forcefully slammed the ball onto the sector after each landing he scored.
Gronkowski received 4 Tremendous Bowls — three with the Patriots (XLIX, LI, LIII) and one with the Buccaneers (LV) in 2020, a sport during which he had two touchdowns, or “tuddies” as he appreciated to name them.
“Rob is a real skilled who left all of it on the sector for us to previous two seasons and helped set up a championship tradition in our constructing,” Buccaneers basic supervisor Jason Licht mentioned in a press release. “He performed an important half in our Tremendous Bowl LV championship season in 2020 and battled by way of various accidents final yr whereas on the best way to some of the productive receiving yardage seasons in his 11-year profession. It’s at all times troublesome to see an important participant stroll away from the sport when he’s nonetheless having fun with that sort of success, however the overwhelming feelings I really feel at present are gratitude and respect for one of many best tight ends who ever performed the sport.Whereas his on-field accomplishments will certainly earn him a gold jacket and a spot within the Professional Soccer Corridor of Fame, it’s his humble angle and team-first strategy to the sport that actually outlined his profession. “
He was named a first-team All-Professional in 2011, 2014, 2015 and 2017, and was picked to 5 Professional Bowls (2011, ’12, ’14, ’15 and ’17). He led the NFL in receiving touchdowns in 2011 and was named NFL Comeback Participant of the 12 months in 2014. He was named to the NFL’s 2010s All-Decade Group and its a hundredth Anniversary All-Time Group.
He leaves the sport with essentially the most profession touchdowns by a good finish in postseason historical past (15) – and the second most at any place behind solely receiver Jerry Rice (22). He additionally has essentially the most 100-yard video games by a good finish in NFL historical past and essentially the most whole TDs in a single season by a good finish in league historical past (18 in 2011).
Gronkowski’s 92 whole profession touchdowns are twelfth most in NFL historical past and third most on the tight finish place behind Antonio Gates (116) and Tony Gonzalez (111). He was the one tight finish in NFL historical past to put up three seasons of 1,000 yards receiving and 10-plus touchdowns (2011, ’14, ’15).