Since Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski threatened to retire in April after hearing the Lions were trying to trade for him, it invited speculation about his future.
Gronkowski, though, isn’t ready to talk about anything beyond this season.
“I haven’t been thinking about that at all,” Gronkowski said at the podium Thursday. “We’re on the last game. We’re in Week 17. We’ve got the Jets, and that’s all I’m really worried about as of now.”
Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, 41, reiterated again Wednesday that he plans to play in 2019 and beyond. Gronkowski isn’t ready to make the same proclamation.
“We haven’t thought about that. I haven’t thought about that,” Gronkowski said of playing as long as Brady. “We’ve got this big game Sunday still and the playoffs after. That’s the last thing that is on my mind right now. I love the grind. I’m all in. I’ve been all in all season, no matter if it’s been up, if it’s been down, and I’m going to tell you this right now: I’m going to be all in for the rest of the year no matter when it is. That’s just my main focus. No matter how it goes.”
Although he is only 29, Gronkowski’s body has taken a beating. He has played 12 games this season, meaning he’s missed 13 games over the past three seasons, and it certainly does not rank as one of his best seasons statistically. Gronkowski has made 45 catches for 658 yards and only three touchdowns.
He had no catches in 59 snaps and three targets in Sunday’s victory over the Bills.
Gronkowski, though, insists he still is having fun.
After discussing moments when he was down over his career, Gronkowski departed with a final thought: “I’m back on the rollercoaster, baby. I’m going. I’m here for the ride.”