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 ESPN.com). “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 OJ 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.”