Sports

New England Patriots Star Rob Gronkowski Announces Retirement From The NFL

(Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

David Hookstead Smoke Room Editor-in-Chief

New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski is done playing football.

The three-time Super Bowl champion wrote the following in part on Instagram Sunday explaining his decision:

It all started at 20 years old on stage at the NFL draft when my dream came true, and now here I am about to turn 30 in a few months with a decision I feel is the biggest of my life so far. I will be retiring from the game of football today. I am so grateful for the opportunity that Mr. Kraft and Coach Belichick gave to me when drafting my silliness in 2010. My life experiences over the last 9 years have been amazing both on and off the field.

You can see his whole post below.

 

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It all started at 20 years old on stage at the NFL draft when my dream came true, and now here I am about to turn 30 in a few months with a decision I feel is the biggest of my life so far. I will be retiring from the game of football today. I am so grateful for the opportunity that Mr. Kraft and Coach Belichick gave to me when drafting my silliness in 2010. My life experiences over the last 9 years have been amazing both on and off the field. The people I have meet, the relationships I have built, the championships I have been apart of, I just want to thank the whole New England Patriots organization for every opportunity I have been giving and learning the great values of life that I can apply to mine. Thank you to all of Pats Nation around the world for the incredible support since I have been apart of this 1st class organization. Thank you for everyone accepting who I am and the dedication I have put into my work to be the best player I could be. But now its time to move forward and move forward with a big smile knowing that the New England Patriots Organization, Pats Nation, and all my fans will be truly a big part of my heart for rest of my life. It was truly an incredible honor to play for such a great established organization and able to come in to continue and contribute to keep building success. To all my current and past teammates, thank you for making each team every year special to be apart of. I will truly miss you guys. Cheers to all who have been part of this journey, cheers to the past for the incredible memories, and a HUGE cheers to the uncertain of whats next.

A post shared by Rob Gronkowski (@gronk) on

What a crazy development on a Sunday afternoon. There appeared to be some serious hints that Gronk was going to be done sooner than later. He’d been very open about his injuries in the past and the physical toll of the game on his body.

What an incredible career he has had. He’ll go down in history as arguably the greatest tight end to ever pick up a football. (RELATED: Patriots Beat The Rams In The Super Bowl)

Plus, he gets to go out after winning another Super Bowl. What more could you ask for?

Gronk will retire with 79 career receiving touchdowns and 7,861 receiving yards. He also made more than $50 million in his career.

I have no idea what the former Patriots star will do in retirement, but I do know that he’ll have plenty of options. He’s an incredibly entertaining guy, he’s charismatic and seems to crush it in front of the cameras.

My guess is that he’ll have no shortage of suitors in the entertainment world. Props to him for an incredible career, and I can’t wait to see what he does next.