He also declared retirement after the 2018 season but opted to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers with Tom Brady in 2020.
This time, it looks like the retirement is permanent and he won’t take the field as an active player again.
But while his playing days are over, there’s no doubt about his next stop.
— NFL (@NFL) June 21, 2022
Gronkowski should be a shoo-in for the Pro Football Hall of Fame once he becomes eligible.
After all, he was the best at his position during his time and he has the accolades to prove that point.
He won four Super Bowls, three with the New England Patriots and one with the Buccaneers.
More importantly, he was a significant contributor to all of those victories.
Case in point: he caught two touchdown passes from Brady in Super Bowl LV to defeat the Kansas City Chiefs, 31-9.
He is also a four-time First-Team All-Pro and a five-time Pro Bowler.
Gronkowski also led the league in receiving touchdowns once and is a member of the NFL 100th Anniversary All-Time Team.
Those credentials are enough for him to have his bronze bust and gold jacket.
Records Held By Gronkowski
If those achievements are insufficient, then his records should seal the deal.
He has the most receiving touchdowns by a tight end in a season with 17.
Gronkowski also has the most postseason touchdowns by a tight end with 15.
His 18 total touchdowns in 2011 is also an NFL record for tight ends.
He also has the most 100-yard games at the position with 32.
Travis Kelce might be able to break some of these marks.
But even then, that possibility does not diminish Gronkowski’s all-time greatness.