Tom Brady wasn’t the only member of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers who has been surrounded with questions about his playing future. While the quarterback has — sort of — made his decision to walk away from the game, the jury is still out on his go-to pass catcher in Rob Gronkowski. The veteran came out of retirement to specifically join Brady in Tampa, so now that he has sailed off into the sunset, it’s fair to wonder what the future holds for arguably the greatest tight end of all time.
“I certainly hope so,” Brady said on his “Let’s Go!” podcast when asked if he believes Gronkowski will continue his career. “I mean, I’ve watched him basically practice and play since he started in the NFL. He can certainly do it. It’s a big commitment for all of us. It’s a big commitment to keep playing. And I know when he’s willing to make that commitment he’s unstoppable out there as a player. So he’ll have a lot of opportunity in every aspect of life because of who he is and his personality and what he brings to what he does. So I sure hope so.
“And there’s a lot of players that are gonna be facing those tough decisions and really weighing the risks [and] the rewards to continue to play. But Gronk is someone that I love. He’s an inspirational person for me, an inspirational friend, teammate. And I think football’s a lot better when he’s in it.”
Gronkowski said back in late January that he was going to take some time to decide what he’ll do next. He also noted that Brady retiring doesn’t automatically point to him going back into retirement as he didn’t rule out playing with another quarterback.
If he does opt to continue playing, he’ll then be faced with the decision of where he wants to be in 2022. Gronkowski is set to be a free agent this offseason, so a return to Tampa is not a sure thing, especially with Brady no longer in the picture. One destination that Gronkowski himself highlighted just before Super Bowl LVI was the Cincinnati Bengals, noting that quarterback Joe Burrow is someone he wants to play with.