Patriots Tight End Rob Gronkowski Announces Retirement from NFL After Nine Seasons
Picture: Sporting News
A talented football player. An even better person and teammate. Many even say the best tight end to play the game. These are all things we have heard in the past two days since Rob Gronkowski announced his retirement.
The tight end posted a heartfelt message to his instagram on Sunday night, letting the world know that he would be retiring from the NFL after nine seasons with the New England Patriots.
In the post, Gronkowski expressed his gratitude to the Patriots organization and fans. He said this decision was the biggest he has faced in his life so far. He also thanked his current and former teammates for all the memories. Gronk ended his message with a “HUGE cheers” to the uncertain future ahead of him.
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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. 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. My life experiences over the last 9 years have been amazing both on and off the field. The people I have meet, the relationships I have built, the championships I have been apart of, I just want to thank the whole New England Patriots organization for every opportunity I have been giving and learning the great values of life that I can apply to mine. Thank you to all of Pats Nation around the world for the incredible support since I have been apart of this 1st class organization. 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. But now its time to move forward and move forward with a big smile knowing that the New England Patriots Organization, Pats Nation, and all my fans will be truly a big part of my heart for rest of my life. It was truly an incredible honor to play for such a great established organization and able to come in to continue and contribute to keep building success. To all my current and past teammates, thank you for making each team every year special to be apart of. I will truly miss you guys. Cheers to all who have been part of this journey, cheers to the past for the incredible memories, and a HUGE cheers to the uncertain of whats next.
Fans, teammates, friends, and fellow Boston sports teams responded to Gronkowski’s announcement with heartwarming messages of their own. Teammates he became close with over the years, such as Tom Brady, Julian Edelman, and Danny Amendola, congratulated Gronk on his amazing career with posts on their Instagrams.
People everywhere, including many Patriots fans, were shocked and disappointed when the news first came out. However, rumors of Gronkowski retiring actually started after the loss to the Philadelphia Eagles Super Bowl 52. Most knew his football career would come to an end soon, but Patriots fans in particular hoped Gronk would play at least another year or two.
Gronkowski’s numerous injuries throughout his football career were more than likely the reason for his retirement. Over the years, he has hurt his back, hip, knee, ankle, head, and forearm. Each of these injuries took Gronk out of the game, in some cases, for the majority of numerous seasons.
Even with the many struggles Gronkowski faced when it came to his health, he was a fighter and an absolute beast on the field.
Although he decided to retire at only 29 years old, Rob Gronkowski had a phenomenal NFL career. During his nine seasons with the Patriots, he accomplished much more than the average football player.
Gronkowski was one of the best tight ends in the league from the moment he was drafted in 2010. During his first three seasons playing for the Patriots, he caught 38 touchdowns. This is more than any tight end over that span in NFL history.
He only got better from there.
Gronkowski ended his impressive career with 521 receptions, 7,861 receiving yards, and 79 touchdowns. He is a five-time Pro Bowler and a four-time All-Pro. Gronk had 111 wins with the Patriots and also appeared in four Super Bowls with the team. He is a three-time Super Bowl champion and many consider him the greatest tight end of all time.
Gronk’s upbeat personality, love for the game, and pure talent make him irreplaceable in every sense. New England will not be the same without him. His teammates, coaches, friends, and all of Patriots Nation are sad to see him go. However, they are grateful for the positive impact Gronk had on, not only the game, but everything around him.
Rob Gronkowski ended his NFL career with a Super Bowl win and a celebratory parade in Boston. What better way to go than that? He retired a champion and a living legend. Congratulations to Gronk on an amazing career!
Highlights from Gronkowski’s Career: