Though Gronkowski hasn’t committed to returning for his 10th season with the Patriots, his comments about taking hits all year long made him sound like he’s leaning a certain way.
“The season’s a grind. It’s up and down. I’m not going to lie and sit here and say every week is the best,” the right end told reporters, according to the Boston Globe. “Not at all … You go up, you go down. You can take some serious hits. To tell you the truth, just try and imagine getting hit all the time and trying to be where you want to be every day in life.
“It’s tough, it’s difficult. To take hits to the thigh, take hits to your head. Abusing your body isn’t what your brain wants. When your body is abused, it can bring down your mood. You’ve got to be able to deal with that, too, throughout the season. You’ve got to be able to deal with that in the games.”
Gronkowski then dove into the expectations even after battling through pain.
“And no one realizes that, and everyone expects us players to be wide awake every single day, and it’s like, ‘Yo, I just took 50 hits to my head,’ or not to my head, but I’m saying I just took 50 collisions, and then like the next day everyone wants you to be up,” he said, according to the Boston Globe.
“They want practice full speed, next week they want the game to be full speed, but they don’t understand sometimes what players are going through with their bodies, with their minds. That’s why I’ve been saying you see a shift in players in games where people are down the whole game, and then you see, all of a sudden, the next week it’s like, ‘How did this team just go from one switch to the other?’ ”
Gronkowski is arguably one of the greatest tight ends in NFL history.