When Rob Gronkowski took the field with Tom Brady for a private workout back in May, there's a good chance the tight end was a little rusty, and that's because Gronk apparently didn't do much to stay in football shape during his retirement.
During an interview on CBS Sports Radio's "Tiki and Tierney" this week, Gronk revealed that he only threw a football a total of TWO times during the 13 months he was retired.
"During that time that I was retired, I think I did every other sport besides football," Gronk said. "I did every other exercise besides football exercises. I played football for 15 years."
On one hand, it's not too surprising to learn that a guy who retired from football decided not to play football at all during his retirement. On the other hand though, this really gives you some insight into Gronk's mindset. It also kind of puts into perspective how shocking it really was that he decided to come out of retirement in April. The tight end seemed to be completely happy not playing football, but it seems everything changed when Brady decided to sign with the Buccaneers.
"I don't like to spill all the beans, but when Tom went down to Tampa, it just looked like a great situation, a great opportunity," Gronk said. "I wasn't just going to come back out of retirement just to come out of retirement. . . . Definitely one of [the factors] was Tom going down to Tampa. That was a big connection. To gain chemistry with a quarterback is not an easy task. That's time you got to put in. That's a lot of work you got to put it. And we put in work for the last -- before this year -- nine years."
Although Gronk wasn't playing football during retirement, he did manage to stay in shape by playing pretty much every sport besides football.
"I was doing yoga, I was doing band workouts, I was doing pilates, I was just going to the beach to go play volleyball," Gronk said, before continuing on with his list. "I was playing cornhole, I was shooting basketball, I was rollerblading, ice hockey, you name the sport, I was playing baseball -- you name the sport, I was doing it. I love to compete. I love sports. I'm an all-around athlete, I would say. I just enjoyed playing all types of sports, so when I got away from football, I stayed active. I stayed super active."
Now that he's in Tampa with Brady, Gronk is expecting to have some "fun" this season.
"When Tom and I talked a little bit and just thought about the situation and how we can pull it off and everything -- everything went well," Gronk said. :Everything went down as planned and the situations all lined up. I thought it was a great opportunity that I couldn't pass on. It's just going to be fun. It's going to be cool."
The season will also be fun for Buccaneers fans if Brady and Gronk can help the team get to the playoffs. If the Bucs somehow manage to qualify for the postseason, it would end the longest playoff drought in the NFC and second-longest in the NFL. Tampa hasn't qualified for the playoffs since 2007, which is only better than the Cleveland Browns, who haven't been to the playoffs since 2002.