New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski announced his retirement from football on Sunday. The three-time Super Bowl champion broke the news via Instagram. “I am so grateful for the opportunity that Mr. Kraft and Coach Belichick gave to me when drafting my silliness in 2010,” he writes. “Thank you for everyone accepting who I am and the dedication I have put into my work to be the best player I could be.”
Gronkowski achieved a staggering amount success during his nine-year career. In 2011, he led the NFL in touchdown receptions, something that had never been done by a tight end. He retires as the all-time leader in postseason receiving yards (1,163) and touchdowns (12) for a tight end.
Gronkowski suffered various injuries throughout his career, and he missed considerable time in the 2013 and 2016 seasons as a result. He turns 30 in May, something he acknowledges in his Instagram post. His final reception was a 29-yard catch in the fourth-quarter of Super Bowl LIII. He was downed on the 2-yard line, and the Patriots would score the game’s only touchdown on the ensuing play.