The New England Patriots are about to play in their third consecutive Super Bowl, but they feel that tight end Rob Gronkowski's struggles this season might be caused by his use of the TB12 Method, according to NFL Network's Michael Giardi.
Giardi reports that the Patriots feel Gronkowski's injuries to his ankle, Achilles and back are due to his preference to use the TB12 Method over the team's workout program.
"Internally the Patriots feel like Gronkowski brought some of this on himself," Giardi said. "During the offseason when he reported, he came in not as strong, not as fast and not as explosive ...The Patriots feel as though if maybe he had done it their way, as opposed to the TB12 way, of which Gronk is devoted to, maybe things would have been different."
Gronkowski missed three games this season because of injuries, finishing the year with only 52.5 yards per game. It's the fewest yards per game he has recorded since his rookie season (34.1). Gronkowski also tallied 47 receptions, 682 yards and three touchdowns for the year.
The five-time Pro Bowler first dealt with Achilles tendonitis in Week 5 that was listed as an ankle injury, reports NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. He later suffered a bulging disc in his back in Week 7 and spent most of the season on the team's injury report.
Rumors swirled that Gronkowski would retire after the 2017 season, and speculation has continued to grow this year. It was reported in January that the tight end is expected to weigh retirement again this offseason.
Gronkowski is reportedly feeling "100%" headed into the Super Bowl, according to Rapoport.
The Patriots and Rams will face off in Super Bowl LIII in Atlanta on Sunday night. Kickoff is slated for 6:30 p.m. ET on CBS.