Rob Gronkowski’s talk of retirement didn’t come out of nowhere, NBC Sports Boston’s Tom E. Curran reports.
Gronk “didn’t enjoy himself in 2017,” Curran said in a TV appearance on Monday, a feeling that began before the season started.
“He seriously considered stepping away from the game in training camp,” Curran said. “At that point, his body wasn’t responding. He wanted to train a certain way, the team didn’t necessarily want him to train the way he wanted to train. ... The season played out and by the end of it, I don’t think that some of the principal players on this team were really happy with the atmosphere and the climate. ... They still need to have a hell of an air-clearing at Patriot Place to get these guys back.”
Curran is referencing how Gronkowski wanted to adopt the training methods of Tom Brady’s guru, Alex Guerrero, this season. Guerrero lost some of his privileges with the Patriots as he team became concerned with his influence over a growing number of players.
Gronkowksi was asked about the idea of retiring following New England’s loss to the Eagles in the Super Bowl and didn’t dismiss it, saying he’d “look at my future.” WWE has reportedly offered him a contract if he decides to leave football.
Though Gronkowski is just 28 and it would be extremely unusual for one of the most dominant players in the league to walk away from the game at the height of their career, he has dealt with numerous injuries to his knee, back and arm, as well as at least two concussions.