Broncos HC Sean Payton Appears to be Recruiting a Future Hall of Famer

Sean Payton

Getty Denver Broncos HC Sean Payton doing an interview during Super Bowl week.

Colorado Buffaloes head coach Deion Sanders might not be the top recruiter in the state of Colorado anymore, the honor could be going to Denver Broncos head coach Sean Payton.

While finishing up his final week working for Fox Sports, Payton was down in Phoenix, Arizona recruiting future hall of fame tight end, Rob Gronkowski.

On February 11, Payton tweeted out a picture of a Broncos shirt with the letter “B” crossed out and replaced it with the letter “G” to make it say, “Groncos.”

In the post, Payton even tagged the former Patriots and Buccaneers tight end.

Then on February 12 during the Super Bowl pregame show, Payton and Gronkowski shared another joke.

“Coach how did we both end up in an orange tie and blue suit?” Gronkowski said.

Payton then told Gronkowski that he had a job for him. “I got a job at the Broncos for you. No training camp, you’re eight touchdowns shy of 100 touchdowns, I think I can get you that.”

Gronkowski Has Un-Retired Before

After nine seasons in the NFL playing for the New England Patriots, Gronkowski announced his retirement in March of 2019 at the age of 29.

In April of 2020, Gronkowski decided he wanted to return to the NFL, but only if he was playing with quarterback Tom Brady in Tampa Bay.

New England traded Gronkowski and a seventh-round pick to the Buccaneers for a compensatory pick in the 2020 NFL Draft.

Gronkowski would end up playing two seasons with Brady in Tampa Bay in which he caught 13 touchdowns and had 1.425 yards receiving. The former second-round pick also won a fourth Super Bowl ring while with Tampa Bay after he caught two touchdowns in the 2021 Super Bowl against the Kansas City Chiefs.

After the Buccaneers failed to make it past the divisional round of the playoffs with a 30-27 loss to the Los Angeles Rams, Gronkowski decided to hang up his pads one more time in June of 2022.

According to Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times, reported back on December 23, 2022, that Gronkowski reached back out to the Buccaneers about a possible return to the team because he was “bored.”

Stroud said the team had several conversations with Gronkowski about a return around Thanksgiving.

“Gronkowski told the Bucs he had been working out. He and the club discussed several options, including signing the 33-year-old to the practice squad to give him a couple weeks to get back into football shape, although they were willing to add him to the active roster.”

On December 22, Gronkowski joined the “Up and Adams Show” and explained that he wasn’t going to play in 2022, but left the future wide open.

“No, I’m not playing this year,” Gronkowski said. “I can’t tell you what I’m doing next year or the year after. You never know. There could be a slight chance.”

Payton is Known for Secret Messages and Symbols

During Payton’s TV appearance before the conference championship games and before he was named the head coach of the Broncos, Payton wore an orange tie and quickly said it was for the Bengals since Cincinnati was taking on the Chiefs in the AFC Championship game.

The internet exploded wondering if Payton wore the tie to send a message that it was for the Broncos and he confirmed it during his introductory press conference.

Later in his presser, Payton explained that he likes being symbolic.

“This pocket tissue I’m wearing right now has an angle going upward and the horse (pin) has an angle going upwards. This morning when I put it on it’s kind of symbolic of the direction we’re heading right now.”

With Payton joking around with Gronkowski, it might not be out of the question that Payton actually is trying to recruit the tight end out of retirement one last time.

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