Nine years into the league may have been one too many for the possible future Hall of Famer Rob Gronkowski. It has been speculated that Super Bowl 53 was the last game Gronkowski would play and hang up his pads and helmet for the final time.
While Gronkowski has played some of the best football ever seen by a tight end, his career has been in jeopardy due to his injuries. Though the severities of the injuries have ranged from a mononucleosis and strep throat to a ACL, it has kept him out of many games since his college years. The big man has missed a total of 24 regular season matchups since 2013. He has dealt with two concussions, three knee injuries including an medial collateral ligament (MCL) and anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). The most important factor in every fans eyes are Gronkowski’s back injuries; he has obtained five back complications two lower back lumbar sprains, two back vertebral fractures, and one disc hernia.
A couple of months ago, James Harrison was asked on FS1’s Undisputed if he believed this season would be the final season of Gronkowski’s football career. His response was yes, due to the fact that after having so many surgeries and sidelined due to back complications, it takes a toll on a player’s body.
Even though the New England Patriot has had a rough history, his numbers with one of the best quarterbacks of all time is absolutely outstanding. When he’s on the field, the defense has their hand full even though the 6-6 tight end isn’t 100 percent healthy. In good shape or not, he’s a force to be reckoned with.
The most important time in football many may say is the playoffs. Gronkowski has showcased his talents in the biggest moments when it counts the most. His time in the late January reads as follows: 16 games played, 81 receptions, 1,163 yards, and 12 touchdowns. Let that sink in for a moment… These are mesmerizing accomplishments any individual may have. Tony Gonzalez is a Hall of Famer and one of the best to play the tight end position as he holds the record for most receiving yards with 15,127. In Gonzalez’s playoff career, he’s only played in seven games, with only 236 total yards, and four touchdowns. Shifting to another Hall of Famer, wide receiver Randy Moss. He’s started in 15 games in the playoffs and has caught 10 touchdowns with 977 yards receiving.
It’s clear that Rob Gronkowski may be the greatest threat many have seen play in the playoffs. Gronkowski has stated in the postgame conference after Super Bowl 53 as well as when he made an appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallonthat he will make his decision in a couple of weeks. In the game winning drive in the Mercedes Benz dome, Gronkowski ran a go route breaking double coverage with the safety coming to help from the end zone, and caught the pass on the second yard line. Next play, New England Patriots scored the only touchdown of the game with a Sony Michel run up the middle. This might have been Gronkowski’s last showdown, but they way the 42 pick in the 2010 draft played, it clearly looks like he has enough in the tank for one more ride.