Brady heaps praise on 'brother' Gronk: No one left it all on field like him

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Tom Brady bid farewell to Rob Gronkowski, one of his longest-tenured teammates, following the tight end's retirement Tuesday.

"Teammate, friend, brother, just a few of the words that come to mind when I think of Gronk," Brady said on Instagram. "Nobody has ever embodied the idea of 'leaving it all out on the field' like Rob has throughout his entire career. Every single snap, I knew that no matter how many people you put in front of him, he was going to get to his spot.

"Even more important is the person he was off the field. Focused when he had to be and fun the rest of the time. Having Gronk in your locker room was every NFL player's dream. I'm proud of all that we've accomplished together, and even more excited for all you have ahead of you. Congrats Gronk, you deserve it."

Gronkowski, who ended his first retirement to join Brady in Tampa ahead of the 2020 campaign, had spent the offseason considering his future.

It was assumed the star pass-catcher was intending to return after Brady unretired in mid-March. Two days after Brady's announcement, Gronkowski was captured on video saying he wanted to make his longtime quarterback sweat.

"I'll let him have a little scare," Gronk said. "He just did it to me for a couple of months, so I"m going to do it to him."

The four-time All-Pro turned 33 years old in May. His injury issues returned in 2021, as he missed five games after playing a full regular season the campaign before for the first time since 2011.

However, while Gronkowski says he's done with the NFL, his agent, Drew Rosenhaus, said he "wouldn't be surprised" if his client was tempted back by Brady during the season, or for next season.

The quarterback suggested on Twitter that he's willing to prove Rosenhaus right.

If Gronkowski does follow through with his retirement, Cameron Brate, as well as rookies Cade Otton and Ko Kieft, will lead Tampa Bay's tight end group.

Brady heaps praise on 'brother' Gronk: No one left it all on field like him
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