Rob Gronkowski Gives Update on NFL Return Following Tom Brady's Un-Retirement

Tom Brady is returning to the NFL despite announcing his retirement in February. But does this mean Rob Gronkowski reunites with Brady and re-signs with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers? The 32-year-old tight end recently spoke to TMZ Sports and was asked if he'll play football this year. 

"I knew if I started catching some passes that my head would have started turning, like, 'Oh, crap, I got to get back out on the field,' "Gronkowski said, per PEOPLE. "And, right now, I'm not ready to get back out on that field," he added. "I'm not ready to commit to the game of football right now." Gronkowski is currently a free agent and is coming off a season where he caught 55 passes for 802 yards and six touchdowns. 

"Even in your 30s, I mean, you just can't just slack it and just be 50% all-in, then you're going to get caught off with the game and it's going to just spit you right out," Gronkowski said, per ESPN. "You've got to be fully dedicated. I'm not ready to do that yet, I'm not going to sign a contract if I'm not fully ready." Gronkowski retired following the 2018 season. He sat out all of 2019 and returned in 2020 to join Brady in Tampa via trade from the New England Patriots.

Gronkowski was asked about Brady un-retiring and said he wasn't surprised by the move. "I knew he was going to come back, but I didn't think he was going to come back this year, to tell you the truth," Gronkowski said. "I thought he was going to come back in a year, spend some time with his family."


Gronkowski was selected by the Patriots in the second round of the NFL Draft in 2010. In his nine seasons with the Patriots, Gronkowski was selected to the All-Pro First Team four times, the Pro Bowl five times and helped the Patriots win three Super Bowls. The University of Arizona alum is a member of the 2010s All-Decade Team and the 100th Anniversary All-Time Team. When Gronkowski joined Brady in Tampa in 2020, he helped the Buccaneers win their first Super Bowl since the 2002 season.