New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski had one year left on his contract when he retired in 2019 after his third and final Super Bowl win with the team. His body had taken so much abuse through injuries, but his love of competing and time to rehab has him ready to get back in the game. He had said he wanted the Pats to trade him to Tampa Bay so he could be reunited with his NE quarterback Tom Brady, 42, in the Sunshine State, and now he has got his wish. ESPN’s senior NFL insider Adam Schefter reported on Apr. 21 that New England will trade Gronk, 30, and a seventh round draft pick for a fourth round pick, pending a physical. The NFL later confirmed the trade news.
HollywoodLife.com spoke to Rob in Nov. 2019 and we asked him if he was officially retired from football or if he was contemplating a return. He EXCLUSIVELY explained to us, “I would say with myself I have to find a passion of something I love doing, trying new things out there because I played a sport my whole life. Ever since I was a kid I was playing football and four sports at a time, and playing football for fourteen or fifteen years straight.” Rob played exclusively for the Patriots during his nine seasons in the NFL.
Rob continued, “So I have always had that to lean on so finding a new passion in my life, finding something that inspires me to wake up every morning and on top of that I love to stay busy and I have found other passions too. But I need to find a work passion, I feel like I need that competitive edge to compete. I have been competing since I was two years old…I have four brothers and we were going at it every single day, didn’t matter what age we were. Just having that competitiveness in my life and taking it to the next level and finding new ways to compete to bring my mind, to bring my body to higher levels that they have never been at before!”
— NFL (@NFL) April 21, 2020
BOOM: Gronk reunited with TB in TB. No Belichick, no snow. The NFL's biggest story just got even bigger. Good luck stopping the Bucs' offense. Good luck keeping the Bucs from becoming 1st team ever to play in a home Super Bowl.
— Skip Bayless (@RealSkipBayless) April 21, 2020
Gronk hinted that something was up when he appeared on Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen on Apr. 20. Andy asked him about rumors he was going to come out of retirement to play with Tom on the Bucs’ 2020-2021 squad. “Andy you want to know what’s so great man. The day that I retired, within 24 hours there were rumors that I was coming out of retirement. I’m feeling good right now. I’m happy where I’m at and you just never know man. You never know. I’m not totally done. I love to stay in shape, but I’ve gotta get that feeling back.”
When Schefter announced the trade reports, he tweeted that, “Two years ago the Patriots agreed to trade Rob Gronkowski to the Lions, but Gronk informed them he’d opt for retirement over playing with a QB other than Tom Brady. Now after a year of retirement, Gronk hoping for a pre-draft trade to reunite with his former QB.” He then added, “Tampa Bay was the only place that Rob Gronkowski wanted it was willing to play, per league source. So if Gronkowski passes his physical, he will get his wish.” Two minutes after that he tweeted, “And further confirmation from Rob Gronkowski’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, who texted ESPN: ‘Pending the physical, Rob has agreed to play for Tampa this season. He will honor his current contract at this time.’” Within the hour, the NFL confirmed the trade.