Throughout his career, tight end Rob Gronkowski has always said that he didn’t want to play without Tom Brady and after winning Super Bowl LV with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this past season Gronkowski said that his focus was on returning to Tampa Bay.
On Monday, Gronkowski re-signed with the Buccaneers on a one-year deal worth $10 million according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. But, heading into this offseason, the former Arizona Wildcat was set to be a free agent for the first time in his career and in a recent appearance on The Ringer’s 10 Question’s With Kyle Brandt, Gronkowski said he wanted to at least test the process.
“I’ve never been a part of the free agency process, so I actually want to dip my toes in just to see what’s out there,” Gronkowski said.
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Gronkowski Considered Returning Home to Buffalo
Part of that free agency process is listening to offers from other teams and according to Mike Silver, Gronkowski considered an offer from his hometown team, the Buffalo Bills, who have been in the market for a tight end this offseason.
Earlier this week, ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler suggested that Gronkowski could be an “intriguing” fit for the Bills as he entered free agency. He caught 45 passes for 623 yards and seven touchdowns this past season and reconnected with Tom Brady in the Super Bowl, catching six passes for 67 yards and two touchdowns.
Gronkowski is only 31-years-old and recently retired from the NFL before returning this past season to play with Brady. So, he could still have a few years of production left but he also sees himself as a one-year guy from now until the end of his career.
“I plan on being a free agent after every season, I feel like I’m a one-year deal guy for the rest of my career,” Gronkowski said. “Even if I play for 10 more years, I’m gonna be a one-year deal guy, a free agent every year, and control my destiny every year.”
The Bills may have missed out on Gronkowski this year, but according to the newly-signed Buccaneer, there is always next year.
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The Bills Are In the Market for a Tight End
With the lack of production from Dawson Knox through the first two seasons of his career, Bills general manager Brandon Beane alluded to the fact that they need better play from the tight end position in 2021 during his end of the season press conference.
In two years, Knox has been an inconsistent pass catcher and has only recorded 52 receptions for 676 yards and five touchdowns. The Bills have also already been connected to a few tight ends this offseason. They were connected to former Tennessee Titans tight end Jonnu Smith, but he agreed to terms with the New England Patriots on Monday.
The Bills have also been connected to Philadelphia Eagles tight end Zach Ertz. He’s coming off one of the worst statistical seasons of his career after catching 36 passes for 335 yards and a touchdown. Pro Football Focus suggested that the Bills should try and trade a 2021 sixth-round draft pick for the veteran tight end who is 30-years-old.