UPDATED 7/12, 2:50 p.m. ET: Rob Gronkowski said he will remain retired even if Tom Brady asks him to return to the NFL. Check out the clip below.
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Rob Gronkowski is retiring from the NFL for the second time.
Widely considered the greatest tight end in NFL history, Gronk took to social media on Tuesday to announce his retirement. The 33-year-old, who retired after the 2018 season before joining Tom Brady with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2020, walks away from football after 11 seasons and four Super Bowl titles.
“In college, I was asked to write about a dream job opportunity that I wanted to pursue and where the location would be,” Gronkowski wrote. “Every time I had to write about my future, no matter what, I picked being a professional football player. For that assignment though, we had to pick the location. So I wrote that I wanted to play in Tampa for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, for many reasons, the sunny weather being #1.”
“I completely forgot about writing this report until 2 years ago when I had the opportunity to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers,” he continued. “And let me tell ya, the journey in Tampa over the last 2 years has blown away what I originally wrote about in college, big time. And for this, I want to thank the whole entire first class Buccaneers organization for an amazing ride, trusting me to come back to play and help build a championship team.”
Gronk added, “I will now be going back into my retirement home, walking away from football again with my head held high knowing I gave it everything I had, good or bad, every time I stepped out on the field. The friendships and relationships I have made will last forever, and I appreciate every single one of my teammates and coaches for giving everything they had as well. From retirement, back to football and winning another championship and now back to chilling out, thank you to all.”
Drafted by the Patriots in the second round of 2010 NFL Draft, Gronkowski spent nine seasons in New England, helping lead the Pats to five Super Bowl appearances and three titles.
From 2010 to 2018, Gronk earned four All-Pro selections (2011, 2014, 2015, 2017), five Pro Bowl nods and a Comeback Player of the Year Award (2014). After retiring in March 2019, he returned the following season, reuniting with Brady in Tampa Bay, where the pair would win their fourth ring together in 2020.
Gronk finishes his career with 92 career touchdowns, trailing only Antonio Gates (116) and Tony Gonzalez (111) for most all-time by a tight end. He also retires with 9,286 receiving yards, the fifth-most all-time by a tight end.