Rob Gronkowski’s retirement draws a sweet message from Tom Brady

Rob Gronkowski’s retirement draws a sweet message from Tom Brady

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Tom Brady reflected on the career of Rob Gronkowski as the tight end announced for the second time that he would be retiring from the NFL.

Brady posted a tribute to his longtime teammate on his Instagram account. Together, Brady and Gronkowski have won four Super Bowl titles, and the quarterback has thrown 84 touchdown passes in the playoffs — the most for any duo in playoff history.

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Tom Brady #12 and Rob Gronkowski #87 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers chat before the game against the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium on November 28, 2021 in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Tom Brady #12 and Rob Gronkowski #87 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers chat before the game against the Indianapolis Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium on November 28, 2021 in Indianapolis, Indiana.
(Michael Hickey/Getty Images)

“Teammate, friend, brother, some of the words that come to mind when I think of @gronk. No one has ever embodied the idea of ​​’leaving it all on the pitch’ like Rob did all Throughout his snap, I knew that no matter how many people you put in front of him, he would come in his place,” Brady wrote on Instagram.

“Even more importantly, he was the person he was off the court. Focused when needed and FUN the rest of the time. Having Gronk in your locker room was every NFL player’s dream. I’m proud of all that we have achieved together, and even more excited for all that you have in front of you.

“Congratulations Gronk, you deserve it.”

ROB GRONKOWSKI ANNOUNCES HIS RETIREMENT FROM NFL

New England Patriots' Rob Gronkowski #87 reacts with Tom Brady #12 after catching a touchdown pass during the second quarter of a game against the Buffalo Bills at Gillette Stadium on December 24, 2017 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.

New England Patriots’ Rob Gronkowski #87 reacts with Tom Brady #12 after catching a touchdown pass during the second quarter of a game against the Buffalo Bills at Gillette Stadium on December 24, 2017 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.
(Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)

Gronkowski was a second-round pick of the New England Patriots in 2010. In his second season, he led the NFL with 17 touchdowns, and his emergence began to change the way NFL teams use tight ends.

He would play 115 games for the Patriots, catching 521 passes for 7,861 yards and scoring 79 touchdowns. He would quit after the 2018 season, citing injury issues.

However, once Tom Brady left the Patriots for the Buccaneers ahead of the 2020 season, it was enough for Gronkowski to come out of retirement to play in Tampa Bay.

He would help the Buccaneers get to the Super Bowl that year and score two touchdowns in the game to give Tampa Bay its second title in franchise history.

Last season, Gronkowski played just 12 games due to injury, and Tampa Bay did not reach the Super Bowl after winning a division title.

In this file photo from Sunday, Feb. 7, 2021, Tampa Bay Buccaneers tight end Rob Gronkowski (87), left, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) celebrate together after the NFL Super Bowl 55 football game against the Kansas City Chiefs in Tampa, Florida.

In this file photo from Sunday, Feb. 7, 2021, Tampa Bay Buccaneers tight end Rob Gronkowski (87), left, and Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) celebrate together after the NFL Super Bowl 55 football game against the Kansas City Chiefs in Tampa, Florida.
(AP Photo/Steve Luciano, File)

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He finished his career with 92 touchdowns and 621 catches for 9,286 yards. His touchdown catches are third all-time among tight ends, and his receiving yards are fifth all-time among tight ends.

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