SI – ?Is New England Patriots Rob Gronkowski seriously considering retiring from the National Football League to pursue a career in the WWE?
“Rob Gronkowski should be in wrestling as much as Rey Mysterio should be catching footballs,” said football columnist Jerry Thornton, whose work is appointment-reading for football fans on Barstool Sports. “Gronkowski is playing at such a high level, and it is rare for anyone to say, ‘I am the best in the world at what I do.’ Rob Gronkowski can say that, and every impression I get from him is that he will be back with the Patriots next season.”
The rumors that Gronkowski is entertaining the idea of a career in the WWE alongside Mojo Rawley were kickstarted after Gronkowski did not fully commit to returning to the NFL after New England’s Super Bowl loss to the Philadelphia Eagles.
“That comment was made right after an emotional loss,” said Thornton. “He said he was going to think about his future, and that’s the correct answer to give.” …
“Gronkowski signed a deal that was very team-friendly when the team came to him early for a contract in 2012,” said Gronkowski. “He has far out-played that deal, but he had no leverage for a new deal. The Patriots then gave him a chance to make a lot more money than he would have with an incentive-laden deal. He’d just come off back surgery in 2016 and the team won a Super Bowl without him, so he really did not have much leverage. The incentives are not guaranteed.
“Gronkowski is the best tight end in football by a lot, but he is not making a lot more than other tight ends. That is an issue, but he’s had a lot of injury problems.”
Thornton, who wrote “From Darkness to Dynasty” on the Patriots and is just finishing his newest book, “Five Rings”, noted that pro wrestling is also a contact sport.
“Wrestling is not a way to protect your body,” said Thornton. “Those guys take punishment. WWE has a concussion protocol. I will say this, however: if Gronkowski goes to WWE, the officiating will be way better than it is in the NFL, and he’ll finally get to work with a commissioner with some integrity.”
Eloquence. Insight. Wit. Candor. Charm. Spot-on analysis. It’s rare in this day and age that you bear witness to such cogent thoughts so cleverly delivered. Not just about Rob Gronkowski or the Patriots, but a host of subjects from pro wrestling to human nature to life itself.
No wonder Sports Illustrated sought out this sexy and articulate man of letters when they were looking for the real story on Gronk, his future and the WWE. And why his work is appointment-reading for football fans on Barstool. Or why his buttery prose turns women to puddles as they long for his Old Balls and fully-functioning man parts. You can almost hear the panties hitting the floor with every line.
Also, just so we’re clear, the idea of Gronk leaving the Patriots at the height of his powers after one of the healthiest and most productive seasons of his storied career to tour with Smackdown for the rest of his life it utter nonsense. He’s a few healthy seasons away from being canonized into the Hall of Fame. Wrestling is a brutal sport, for real. And while I have nothing but love for the man, we’ve seen him act in commercials, sing, do stand up, roast David Ortiz and wrestle. And as a versatile, multiple-threat show business performer, he’s not exactly Hugh Jackman. If Gronk is anywhere other than the Patriots line of scrimmage at camp in July, then everything that clever, articulate and hilarious sex god that SI spoke to knows is wrong.