I mentioned last week when Patriots training camp started that Rob Gronkowski looks healthier than he has in a while. He’s not wearing that gigantic K-9 trainer sleeve. He was moving better than he did at last year’s camp when he walked off the field with the first of a series of injuries that plagued him all year. And he made a combo platter of catches over the defensive backs, most notably Pat Chung. If you’re going to predict he’ll play his first full season since 2011 on the basis of one non-contact, helmets-and-shorts practice, you should be put in a medically induced coma for your own safety. But there’s no question he passed the eye test.
Then again, maybe there is something to what everyone at camp has seen so far. The Herald interviewed Gronk and talked about how he’s joined Julian Edelman and Danny Amendola in getting trained by Tom Brady’s TB12 partner/Jedi master Alex Guerrero. Apparently he’s doing the resistance band training. Working on getting more “pliable.” He says Brady is bringing him one of his disgusting dehydrated algae, kale and spirulina meals every day. But the big thing is he dropped this little bombshell:
Brady, of course, doesn’t drink alcohol.As for Gronk?
He hasn’t quite given that up. He’s still a party boy at heart. But to make up for that there’s a price to pay.
“Yeah, ask the guru,” Gronkowski said, referring to Guerrero.
We did ask the guru, and here’s how it works. For every drink that’s not on the plan, such as coffee or an alcoholic beverage, you have to consume at least three glasses of water to make up for cheating, to offset the ramifications. So, let’s just say Gronk is drinking tons of water.
I just don’t know how to process the idea of Gronk going on the wagon. And no matter what Guerrero thinks, this is the wagon. The de facto wagon. I can’t imagine a bigger disincentive to drink than having to chug three waters for every cocktail. If you had to go to confession three times for every time you masturbated, the world’s porn economy would collapse and we’d be living like after the fall of Rome.
I mean, this is great news for those joyless, judgmental Puritans who’ve been saying Gronk is doing himself and his team a disservice every time he goes Shirtless O’Clock and DDT’s one of his brothers on stage someplace. But I’m not that guy. On the contrary. I’ve always felt like sweet, wonderful booze was part of what made him Gronk. Like the Super Soldier Serum they gave Steve Rogers to become Captain America.
Not to mention I sort of rely on him being the big stupid party animal he’s always been. I’m a rapidly aging, high functioning alcoholic who’s big nights out now are cookouts or bar trivia on a weeknight. I need to live vicariously through him. Gronk is the direwolf my poor, quadriplegic Bran Stark projects into. I need that to take me out of my own misery. His dance floor dry humps and nightclub 69 jokes are gonna make themselves.
So I’m afraid that having him on the bright is something that will make life less fun for all of us. Like a great friend who has to sober up because he got in trouble or something. And while they still hang around, they’re just way less interesting somehow. But at the same time, if those Temperance Union jagoffs who’ve always claimed he was hurting himself with his debauchery are right and he actually does somehow play better under this new regimen, then that’s a sacrifice we’ll all just have to make I guess.