Gronk Thanks the Patriots for 'Drafting My Silliness' in Official Retirement Message
Posted by: Gronkowski
It’s the end of an era, but the start of new beginnings.
Gronk dropped the news that all football fans had been fearing when he officially announced on Sunday that he is retiring from the NFL.
“It all started at 20 years old on stage at the NFL draft when my dream came true, and now here I am about to turn 30 in a few months with a decision I feel is the biggest of my life so far. I will be retiring from the game of football today,” Rob wrote on Instagram.
“I am so grateful for the opportunity that Mr. Kraft and Coach Belichick gave to me when drafting my silliness in 2010. My life experiences over the last 9 years have been amazing both on and off the field. The people I have met, the relationships I have built, the championships I have been a part of, I just want to thank the whole New England Patriots organization for every opportunity I have been giving and learning the great values of life that I can apply to mine.
“Thank you to all of Pats Nation around the world for the incredible support since I have been a part of this 1st class organization. Thank you for everyone accepting who I am and the dedication I have put into my work to be the best player I could be. But now it’s time to move forward and move forward with a big smile knowing that the New England Patriots Organization, Pats Nation, and all my fans will be truly a big part of my heart for rest of my life.
“It was truly an incredible honor to play for such a great established organization and able to come in to continue and contribute to keep building success. To all my current and past teammates, thank you for making each team every year special to be a part of. I will truly miss you guys. Cheers to all who have been part of this journey, cheers to the past for the incredible memories, and a HUGE cheers to the uncertain of what’s next.”
Gronk retires as the greatest tight end in the history of the NFL, with most experts predicting that he’ll be a first-ballot induction into the Hall of Fame in 2024 when he becomes eligible for Canton. Over his nine years with the Pats, No. 87 totaled 7,861 receiving yards (the seventh all-time in his position), caught 79 touchdown catches, and averaged 68.4 yards a game. He’s the only tight end to have 500 career passes and average better than 15 yards per reception, plus to have more than 1,000 yards (1,163 to be precise) in postseason history. He also holds the Super Bowl record of 23 receptions for 297 yards.
The very last play of Rob’s illustrious career epitomizes everything that came before it. His 29-yard catch from Tom Brady down to the Los Angeles’ Rams 2-yard line led to the only touchdown of Super Bowl LIII and earned the Patriots their sixth championship.
There’s no better way to go out than that.
Before you go...