As a sports fan, there’s nothing worse than seeing an athlete retire in his or her prime. Excitement quickly turns into regret; you’ll always wonder what could have happened if they simply stayed healthy. That’s precisely what happened with New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski.
Ever since injuries forced Gronk to retire, fans and players alike have been hoping that he could return to NFL action. While there have been constant rumors that he would—and then would not—rejoin a team, the big tight end seems to have finally clarified things. He’ll only consider a comeback on one specific condition.
Rob Gronkowski’s injury history
During his playing career, no one could stop Rob Gronkowski. Injuries, however, were able to slow the tight end down.
During his time with the Patriots, Gronk piled up 79 receiving touchdowns, 7,861 receiving yards, and three Super Bowl titles. Unfortunately, he also racked up his fair share of injuries. He battled a back injury for most of his career and broke his forearm twice as a Patriot. He suffered a concussion, torn MCL, and torn ACL on the same play in 2013 and dealt with the same strains, tweaks, and bruises that every NFL player knows all too well.
Ultimately, those injuries became too much for Gronkowski. “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,” he explained. It’s tough, it’s difficult. To take hits to the thigh, to 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.”
Gronkowski’s post-retirement plans
While Rob Gronkowski’s life isn’t built around the NFL anymore, the tight end still manages to keep busy. In addition to constantly addressing rumors about a potential comeback, the former tight end has two main gigs these days.
Earlier this season, Gronk joined Fox Sports’ team of NFL analysts. He made his debut when his former team played the New York Giants on Thursday Night Football and has been providing his insight ever since.
Gronkowski has also gotten involved in the CBD business, partnering with Abacus Health Products. It’s that arrangement that provided an insight into his potential NFL future.
His 1 condition for a return?
While no one is really sure if Gronkowski is seriously planning an NFL comeback, the tight end laid down the law last week. In order for him to even consider suiting up again, the NFL would need to remove CBD from their banned substances list.
“I don’t want to be banned from playing the sport I love because I’m using a product that anyone can buy right off the shelf at their local pharmacy,” Gronkowski said at a press conference. “I also want to have the option to get back into the game, and if I’m banned next year I can’t.”
It’s important to remember, however, that Gronk is working for a CBD company; this could all very well be a PR move built to capitalize on the tight end’s recognition. But, as the old cliche says, where there’s smoke, there’s fire. If Rob Gronkowski keeps talking about a potential NFL comeback, it’s hard to believe there isn’t some part of him that wants to play again.