Connect with us
Home » news » gronk feels super going into title game

News

Gronk feels Super going into title game

Avatar

Published

on

PHOENIX — The last time tight end Rob Gronkowski was in the Super Bowl, his ankles were heavily taped and he was targeted only three times while hobbling through a season-low percentage of the snaps.

After a record-breaking regular season, he barely made a ripple in the biggest game of his career, as the New England Patriots lost 21-17 to the New York Giants in Indianapolis three years ago.

This time, he’s his super self. It’s the full Gronk. Gronk, smash.

“I’m feeling good, feeling great, feeling healthy,” Gronkowski said Tuesday at Super Bowl Media Day. “It’s cool to not have to answer questions every four seconds about my ankles. That’s a really big change.”

The cameras were four deep around Gronkowski’s podium at media day, which he started with his trademark big grin and a peace sign before taking a seat. And Media Day being Media Day, he answered a lot of questions about things with absolutely no relevance to the game — Katy Perry’s halftime show, the erotic novel “A Gronking to Remember,” his party bus (en route to Arizona), about who would play him in a movie (“Schwarzenegger,” he said) — but the topic of conversation around Gronkowski often circles right back around to injuries.

He has had multiple back surgeries, dating to his college days at Arizona, repeated arm surgeries and one to repair the ACL and MCL in his right knee in January. The spotty health and several times under the knife at age 25 have been the only things that relegate the NFL party boy to the realm of the mere mortals.

This season puts him back at the table of the Greek gods.

Coming off the knee rehab, Gronkowski caught 82 passes for 1,124 yards and 12 touchdowns in the regular season, his best since 2011, when he posted 90 catches for 1,327 yards and 17 scores. He will be looking for a whopper of a topper to his season Sunday in Glendale vs. the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLIX.

He had only 13 catches through four games as he progressively tested the knee, but he has been nearly unstoppable since then in what turned out to be his healthiest year in the past three seasons.

“It’s definitely a tough experience, man,” Gronkowski said of the injuries. “I definitely don’t take the game for granted anymore. It’s an honor to be out there with my teammates and all.”

Not everyone is a believer. Seahawks cornerback Jeremy Lane made early headlines last week when he said of Gronkowski: “I actually don’t think he’s that good. He’s OK. He does have a big body. But from what I’ve seen on tape, he doesn’t like you putting your hands on him. So if we put our hands on him and shake him up a little bit, he won’t catch that many balls.”

Seattle coach Pete Carroll tried to walk back some of those comments, but they were already out there, not that Gronk took any of the bait Tuesday. He offered nothing but love letters and rose petals for the Seahawks defense.

“They’re very, very good,” he said. “They’re very, very talented. They’re very, very tough mentally and physically.”

He was asked repeatedly about the potential matchup against Seahawks strong safety Kam Chancellor. Full-speed collisions between the players could shake the earth.

“He’s a great player,” Gronkowski said, following the script. “I can be matched up with anyone at any time, so we have to prepare for any situation. You have to be ready. You have to prepare. You have to bring it because you know they will.”

Gronkowski is ready to bring it. He was unable to rise to the occasion three years ago. He caught only two passes for 26 yards in Super Bowl XLVI while playing on an ankle that required arthroscopic surgery less than a week after the game.

Famously, that ankle didn’t stop him from partying, dancing shirtless into the wee hours after the Super Bowl, one of Gronk’s many epic YouTube moments. Imagine the TMZ quality of his celebration if the Patriots actually win the Super Bowl this time.

That’s all fun, and that’s who Gronk is, but his reputation belies the football monster inside him. Nobody comes back from the injuries he has had without excessive hard work, without the sharpest competitive spirit.

“Rob is a great teammate,” wide receiver Julian Edelman said.

“He’s a big goofball, a big baby. All he cares about is football and football. You love having him in the locker room. He makes things fun. He works hard. He’s all about this team. It’s great to have him. He’s one of the best.”

At Media Day, Gronkowski twice sang the opening to his college fight song, “Bear Down, Arizona,” crooned a bit to Perry’s “Roar,” and even read a line from the new Gronk-themed series of erotica.

Asked if he had predictions for the Super Bowl, he deadpanned, “Yeah, the game will be on Sunday.”

His only mention of #DeflateGate was to say, “I totally forgot about it until you brought it up. It has nothing to do with me, other than maybe my spikes.”

Look for those touchdown spikes on Sunday. Gronk is healthy. He’s ready — and able this time — to conquer the Super Bowl.

Since 1987, the Sports Xchange has been the best source of information and analysis for the top professionals in the sports publishing & information business

News

Buccaneers admit mistake, boot Aguayo

Avatar

Published

on

In the NFL, it’s always better to admit a mistake than to compound it. For the Buccaneers, the decision to burn a 2016 second-round pick on kicker Robert Aguayo has proven to be a mistake. The Buccaneers made the definitive admission of their error on Saturday, cutting Aguayo. He exits with $428,000 in fully-guaranteed salary [more]

Source: Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk

Powered by WPeMatico

Continue Reading

News

Did Bucs put too much pressure on Aguayo?

Avatar

Published

on

After the Buccaneers surprised everyone by taking a kicker with the 59th overall pick in the draft, G.M. Jason Licht explained the move by heaping superlatives on the player. “I was very excited along with my staff and coaches about Roberto for a very long time,” Licht told PFT Live in May 2016. “It’s not [more]

Source: Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk

Powered by WPeMatico

Continue Reading

News

Broncos holding their breath on Derek Wolfe

Avatar

Published

on

Only two days after losing Billy Winn for the year with a torn ACL, the Broncos are now sweating out another potentially serious injury along the defensive line. Via multiple reports, Broncos defensive lineman Derek Wolfe was carted off the field during practice on Saturday. It’s being described as a right ankle injury by coach [more]

Source: Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk

Powered by WPeMatico

Continue Reading

The NFL On Twitter


Insiders On Facebook

Trending Now

Copyright © 2021 Insider Sports, Inc