It’s always hard to see someone like Julian Edelman go down, Rob Gronkowski told HL. When we caught up with him in NYC, Gronk revealed the mentality of the Pats after Edelman’s season-ending knee injury.
In the eyes of a lot of Patriots fans, Rob Gronkowski, 28, is the healthiest he’s been in a long time. Having played in his first pre-season since 2012, due to injury, Gronk is back in full swing. Nonetheless, while his health is on the rise, it’s a different story for his teammate, Julian Edelman, 31, who suffered a season-ending knee injury during a pre-season game on August 25 against the Lions. Edelman, who is a crucial part of the Pats’ roster and was a 2017 Super Bowl hero alongside Danny Amendola, 31, tore his ACL, per MRI results. Now Gronk says he and more of his teammates need to “step up” as they move forward without their star wide receiver, Edelman.
HL exclusively caught up with Gronk — who was with his good friends at Tide — in NYC just before the Patriots’ big opener against the Chiefs [September 10]. We hit a slew of topics with New England’s star tight-end, some of which included Edelman’s devastating injury, what’s to come this season from himself and the Pats, and his own health. The Pats lost Gronk to injury in the past few seasons; He missed the second half of last season due to a back injury, which required surgery; He was placed on IR in December 2016; And, since 2012, he had also broken his forearm, which required four separate surgeries, and he tore his ACL. So, Gronk understands the situation his good friend and teammate, Edelman is going through. But, now, Gronk is “super excited” to be back out on the field after being cleared for pre-season camp with no restrictions. And, you know we asked Gronk about his cameo in Katy Perry‘s “Swish Swish” video, as well as his involvement with the launch of Demi Lovato‘s single, “Sorry Not Sorry”!
[Be sure to check out Gronk’s hilarious commercial above, with Tide. The commercial encourages amateur athletes to “Spike the Stink” with Tide Sport PODS; learn more below]. HL’s full interview with Gronk is below.
In the midst of the news that Julian Edelman is out for the season with an ACL tear, how have you and the team been handling his absence?
It’s never good to see a player like him go down. The way he works and the way he plays the game is second to none. He’s not a player you can replace. In order to move on now, myself and other guys are going to need to step it up and take on a bigger role. But, he’s definitely going to be missed out there on the field.
What is the Patriots mentality going into this season?
It’s always been the same; we’re taking it one day at a time and preparing hard. We have a really big game coming up, our opener. The Chiefs are a really good team with a good defense. So, we need to focus on that do what we have to do to prepare for week 1.
How are you feeling now? Do you think you’re the healthiest you’ve been in a long time?
Yes, I’m feeling good. I’ve been out there and I went through the whole camp this year and I felt good. I’m super excited to get going again and get ready for the season.
How was it to get your feet wet in the pre-season games since 2012?
It felt really good to be out there. I felt like it got me ready and got my feet under me and got the game going.
What’re your expectations for this year? Do you think it’s going to be “Gronk’s best year yet” as some have predicted?
That’s great the people are talking like that. Hopefully that’s the case. I’m working every day to be the best player I can be, and I just have to keep working and got to keep dedicating myself every day to go out there and do my job, do what I gotta do for the team, and hopefully it just goes down as a great season for the whole organization. But, as of now, we’re just really focused.
How have you been preparing for the season?
You got to have the right treatment and have treatment every day in order to get your body ready for the next day after you just punished it that day in a hard workout session or practice session. You have to rehab to keep your body strong, keep your back strong, keep your core strong. I love doing core workouts. I feel like that’s the main center piece of your body that keeps everything operated and just eating well too. What you put in your body, what fuel you put in it what you get out. I eat [Tom] Brady‘s meals the ones he came out with; I eat his dinner at night and I feel super clean and healthy, and it keeps you going.
After injury, surgery and being sideline; you’ve been through a lot. And, sometimes, people don’t come out on the other end like you have. What kept you going?
You just have to keep working hard. You have to keep working through it and take the the rehab progress and demolish it; push through it. You have to push through the pain, because it will eventually go away. It will all eventually make you a better player. Just keep doing things right. And, you have to love them game. Now, I want to make sure I keep working hard so I can make sure I’m able to keep playing.
What advice would you give to young athletes trying to make it?
First off, in a workout sense, get your core right. Keep your core strong, it’s the center piece your body. Start at a young age so you always have a strong core throughout your life. And, to keep working hard and listen to your coaches. Most importantly, you have to do well in school in order to be eligible to be out on the field.
How was it to be involved with Demi Lovato’s new single and make a cameo in Katy Perry’s music video?
Demi was doing a tour and it was super cool to the be athlete to go over there and introduce her out to the crowd to introduce “Sorry Not Sorry”. She did an unbelievable job. And, when I was out in LA, I was doing a shoot just down the street from Katy Perry’s music video shoot for “Swish Swish”, and they asked if I could be in it. They actually donated money to my foundation, Gronk Nation Youth Foundation, which helps kids; I thought it was super cool and awesome.
What would you be doing if you weren’t playing football?
It would probably be something in the fitness industry. I love staying active and being in shape. My family has a background of being in the fitness industry/business. We sell fitness equipment. My dad has 18 stores and we have Gronk Fitness.
As mentioned above, we caught up with Gronk when he was with his Tide family, representing Tide Sports PODS. He is the star of their hilarious new commercial, where he had the chance to be a kid again [with pigtails] and courage young ones to get out there any give it their all! Check out what he had to say about the partnership, below!
What made you want to partner with Tide?
It was kind of an obvious choice since I’ve been using Tide my whole life. Tide is America’s no. 1 detergent and I just knew that it would be a great. I always say my motto, “I’m Rob G No. 1 and I thought that it would be pretty cool to go with that. So I’ve been working with them and I love their ideas, I love their creativity; they’re super fun and easy.
How was it to film the commercial… and, dress up in pigtails?
It was a lot of fun, the shoots for the commercials are a good time. In the videos, I’m representing the amateur athletes, with pigtails, to show that amateur athletes can stink just as much as professional athletes. I mean, growing up, when I was an amateur athlete, I was just as stinky as I am now after practice or a game. I’m encouraging kids everywhere to give it their all out on the field, because no matter how much sweat it takes, Tide Sport Pods will always take the odor out of any gear, anytime. So, give it all you’ve got.
Growing up with 5 brothers, running around, who actually all ended up being professional athletes in some way and sport, you can only imagine what my mom was up against, every day doing the laundry. I wish back then if she only had the Tide Sports Pods, if they were around, I feel like her life would’ve been way easier and much more pleasant smelling. So, I’m sorry mom that I didn’t have them back then. But, I have them now and I hooked her up! She’s good to go.
HollywoodLifers, do you think the Pats will win back-to-back Super Bowls?