Rob Gronkowski unretired from the NFL once before; would he do it again?
Probably not. That said, according to Gronkowski, there’s a former New England Patriots assistant who could get him to at least mull the matter.
On Wednesday’s edition of “Up & Adams,” Gronkowski said that while he can’t be talked into playing again, New York Giants head coach Brian Daboll would have the best chance of changing the future Hall of Fame tight end’s mind.
Daboll had two coaching stints with the Patriots under head coach Bill Belichick (2000-06 and 2013-16), serving primarily as an offensive assistant. In his second go-around with the Patriots, Daboll served as the team’s tight ends coach, where he worked with Gronkowski.
The tight end retired after winning Super Bowl LIII with the Patriots in 2019. Gronkowski then returned a year later, following Tom Brady to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, where the two won Super Bowl LV in 2021.
Gronkowski earned five Pro Bowl Game nods, four All-Pro honors and was part of four Super Bowl-winning teams. He also had five seasons where he posted 10-plus receiving touchdowns and won the 2014 NFL Comeback Player of the Year Award.
Across his 11-year NFL career (2010-18 and 2020-21), Gronkowski totaled 621 receptions (10th all-time among tight ends in NFL history) for 9,286 yards (sixth all-time among tight ends) and 92 touchdowns (third all-time among tight ends).
Daboll is entering his second season as New York’s head coach after it posted a 9-7-1 campaign in his first season and won a playoff game for the first time since winning Super Bowl XLVI.
If Daboll ever got to Gronkowski, the 34-year-old would make a compelling tight end room quite possibly the best in the sport; the Giants acquired Darren Waller, a Pro Bowler who has two 1,100-plus receiving yard seasons under his belt, from the Las Vegas Raiders this offseason and have second-year tight end Daniel Bellinger, who logged 30 receptions across 12 games last season.
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