Is money holding up Rob Gronkowski’s return to the Buccaneers?

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Free-agent tight end Rob Gronkowski has said he’ll play for the Buccaneers or no one in 2022. Currently, he’s playing for no one.

With the offseason programs inching toward conclusion, chances are he won’t be signing before the start of training camp. The real question is whether he’ll be signing at all.

At the heart of the issue could be the question of what the Bucs can or will pay Gronkowski. With the receiver market going haywire and with 49ers tight end George Kittle recently telling #PFTPM that the disparity between top wideout pay and Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce‘s annual rate “boggles the mind,” it’s not unreasonable to ask whether Gronk is worth more than the $8 million or $10 million or whatever compensation package the Bucs will offer him.

He’s worth a lot more than that. The question is whether they offer him enough to make playing worth his while.

Gronk isn’t going to come out and say it. He won’t want to seem greedy or selfish. But it’s neither, if a guy wants to be paid what he’s worth for what he does.

Why shouldn’t Gronkowski want fair value? Even if he’s never spent a dime of his football money (he famously lives off his endorsements), he shouldn’t get less than full and fair value for his skills, abilities, risks, and sacrifices.

He should have a ceiling below which he won’t play. Maybe he does. And maybe the Bucs just haven’t gotten there yet.

Regardless, he should be done with playing for anything less than $15 million per year — especially after the receiver market has skyrocketed toward $30 million.

27 responses to “Is money holding up Rob Gronkowski’s return to the Buccaneers?

  1. Gronk is in Miami having the time of his life. No one can seriously say they expected him to be at OTAs or minicamp. He will close out his bar tab and show up in Tampa when he is good and ready.

  2. His desire to skip training camp is whats holding back Rob Gronkowski’s return.

  3. I wouldnt be entirely surprised if he waited til week 1 or sometime soon after to show up. At this point it’s likely money and also not wanting to commit the offseason time while putting slightly less wear and tear on his body.

  4. Ha, he ain’t getting $15M a year so quit stirring that pot. Gronk should have been the highest paid non-QB/DE in football in his prime, but his prime is long gone.

  5. The last 2 years, he’s average 700 yards and 6.5 TDs a year. Granted, his familiarity with Brady and his blocking ability increase his value somewhat, but 15 million a year? No.

  6. Is he worth a huge package? Played in 12 games last year and has a long history of injuries. He isn’t the player he once was and if you pay for even 80% of what he was you are going to get ripped off. He is now a redzone target that will miss 4 to 6 games, maybe even the playoffs.

  7. Gronk’s concerns always have been playing for Brady, and his health. He had hugely painful injuries last season which is why he originally retired and which is why he’s taking his time now. For once in 2020 he was healthy. Then last year he took a beating. No reason to sign yet, let his body heal and see how he feels in a bit.

  8. $15 million for 700-800 yards a season? $20k per yard? I realize he is a good run blocker and they can recoup some of it in merch, but how do you pay him $15 and field a team?

  9. Nothing wrong with Gronk relaxing until October/November then coming back right before the playoffs.

  10. He’ll play…. No training camp & 10 million should do it…. The rest is just noise

  11. He can send a video of him running a couple sprints in his backyard between beers and call it a day

  12. He’d be happily retired if “Tom Terrific” would just leave him be! He pressures him to keep coming back because what’s good for Tom is good for Tom!

  13. Gronk hates training time. When TB12 sends out the Gronk signal, Rob will be there. Money is important, but not the most important thing in his life. It might be further done the list than you realize.

    Gronk is Gronk. That’s a good thing.

  14. 100% playing.

    He’ll wait until the last second to sign and won’t go for every last dollar.

    If he’s healthy during the playoffs, he’s the best tight end in football and the best red zone target. Still.

  15. I’m not a GM, nor should I be with the comment that’s about to come, but I would have ZERO issue paying Gronk $10m to play the last 7 games of the year + playoffs as long as Brady is the QB.

    It’s FAR better to have Brady’s favorite play-extending, red-zone target in prime shape for the postseason than it is to risk injury.

    I feel the same way about Kelce & Kittle. They’re so important down the stretch that I’d use them sparingly, if at all, for the first 10 games.

  16. I think Gronk will definitely play. He just won’t do anything until at least camp if not the preseason (and even then he won’t play in a game). Given his injury history and wear and tear, this is unsurprising. Given his skill set and chemistry with TB, it’s also totally unconcerning. As for money, they’d be nuts not to offer him 15m with another 100k per game active roster bonus and 250k playoff game bonus. Then, more bonuses for wins in the post season. With incentives, Gronk should be able to earn 20m.

  17. Wheels are getting loose on this one and done squad. Itll be fun to watch this team fail at buying a SB ring again

  18. Gronk doesn’t worry about the money but he hates practice and that’s why he’s waiting to sign.

  19. So Christian Kirk is going to screw up the tight end market too? Good grief, where does it end?

  20. $15 million for Gronk at this stake of his career is crazy. He’s very valuable, of course, but not that valuable. Will he play? Of course. Will he show up a minute before he needs to? Absolutely not. Gronk will be there cause Brady is there. Shoot, he may show up mid-season, and TB will welcome him.

  21. Gronk is really only worth the $8 million given age and injuries. He does have a plus factor in that he’s a fan fav and good with media. But he’s also not a team captain. Not to mention he came out of retirement for $12M. I hope he is back and frankly, I don’t care what they pay him…but nearly $1M a game to be on the field for 2/3 of the snaps at most is too much. Take $10M Gronk, and let’s see you play!

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