Tom Brady has depended on Rob Gronkowski a lot over the years, but he’s not mad at his star tight end for deciding to retire.
In Tom Brady’s perfect world, Rob Gronkowski would keep playing for the Patriots for the duration of his NFL career. That isn’t going to happen though as Gronkowski announced his retirement on Sunday. That doesn’t mean that Brady has any hard feelings about his tight end’s decision though.
Instead, the future Hall of Fame quarterback has nothing but love for Gronkowski. Brady took to Instagram to express his appreciation for Gronk after learning of his retirement.
Not only did he claim to love Gronkowski, but he also said he couldn’t ask for a better “teammate.” His sentiments are no surprise given all the success the two players enjoyed on the season together.
Wide receiver Julian Edelman is another player who’s massively benefited from playing with Gronkowski. The Super Bowl MVP enjoyed a lot of single coverage because of how much attention defenses need to pay to the game’s best tight end. Edelman took to Twitter to call Gronkowski the “other GOAT.” Putting Gronk in the same company as Brady is high praise from anyone associated with the Patriots.
Of course, it’s easy for Gronkowski’s teammates to wish him well in the midst of a comfortable offseason. Their true feelings might best be revealed when they’re forced to play without him next year. That’s when every Patriot will truly feel the reality of Gronkowski’s retirement. The New England offense is going to look much different next season without their best receiver.
Don’t expect any player to really begrudge Gronkowski for making the choice best for himself though. Even though he’s retiring before he hits 30 years of age there’s no question he’s put a lot of miles on his body during his NFL career. Every player in the NFL understands his desire to retire while he’s still in good condition. Players like Brady and Edelman will miss Gronkowski in 2019, but no one will criticize him after all he’s given to football.