By Evan Bleier / March 27, 2019

Evaluating Rob Gronkowski’s Career Prospects After the NFL

Gambling website SportsBetting.ag has odds on how Gronk will collect his next paycheck.

Rob Gronkowski of the Patriots in 2013. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
Rob Gronkowski of the Patriots in 2013. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)

Like quarterback Tony Romo, wideout Calvin Johnson, and lineman John Urschel have recently done, Rob Gronkowski has decided to retire a little early in order to pursue other opportunities outside of football (and ensure he’ll be relatively CTE-free while doing so).

Prior to this year’s Super Bowl, the All-Pro tight end gave some indication the grind of the gridiron was close to getting him to hang up his cleats for good.

“The season’s a grind. It’s up and down. You can take some serious hits,” Gronkowski said. “To tell you the truth, just try and imagine getting hit all the time and trying to be where you want to be every day in life. It’s tough, it’s difficult. To take hits to the thigh, take hits to your head. Abusing your body isn’t what your brain wants. When your body is abused, it can bring down your mood. You’ve got to be able to deal with that, too, throughout the season. You gotta be able to deal with that in the games. And no one realizes that, and everyone expects us players to be wide awake every single day, and it’s like, ‘Yo, i just took 50 hits to my head’ – or not to my head, but I’m saying I just took 50 collisions, and then like the next day everyone wants you to be up. They don’t understand sometimes what players are going through with their bodies, with their minds.”

That kind of sentiment, along with the Patriots winning Super Bowl LIII partially thanks to a game-changing catch from Gronkowski, was enough to convince Gronk that it was time to leave the NFL early on a high note.

But, thanks to his larger-than-life profile and relatively young age (29), it seems unlikely Gronkowski will be leaving the public spotlight anytime soon.

So what’s next for the top touchdown scorer in Patriots history?

There’s no way to know for sure, but gambling website SportsBetting.ag has odds on what Gronk will be doing next to collect a paycheck. They are below along with our take on the second career options that SportsBetting suggests for the surefire Hall of Famer.

SportsBetting.ag’s odds on what Gronk will do next. (SportsBetting.ag)

Fight in WWE

Where there’s smoke there’s often fire and there has certainly been plenty of smoky speculation about Gronk swapping his NFL jersey for a WWE singlet. Before he even retired, wrestling legend John Cena said Gronkowski would make a “great WWE superstar” if he decided to hit the mat. “I think he’s got this unbelievable energy and infectious electricity about him,” Cena told ESPN. “I think if he wants to take off the pads and step in the arena, I think he’ll feel right at home.”

Wrestler Mojo Rowley, who got an assist from Gronkowski at WrestleMania 33 while winning the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal, also said he expects to see Gronk transition to pro wrestling. “He’s always been a wrestling fan,” Rawley said. “In the future, I’m sure at some point you’ll see him inside a WWE ring in one capacity or another.”

NFL Commentator

As the aforementioned Romo proved two seasons ago, NFL players with little to no TV experience can make damn good broadcasters right off the bat. And, as his former Cowboy teammate Jason Witten proved last season, they can also be downright awful. While he certainly wouldn’t be as polished as Romo, Gronkowski would almost certainly fare better than Witten – who has since returned to the NFL – if for no other reason than he would know better than to mix politics and football.

However, any network that does hire Gronk would be wise not to ask him about a superpower he’d like to have. If they do, he might respond he’d like to have a time machine which could travel to Florida, demonstrating he doesn’t know what a superpower is or what a time machine does.

Actor

Gronkowski already has two things which are required to be a successful actor: charisma and an IMDB page.

With appearances in movies like EntourageYou Can’t Have It, and American Violence already under his belt,  Gronkowski is sure to raise his film profile even higher thanks to two movies he has coming out this year. In one, a comedy called Deported, a Gronkowski plays someone called “Party Guy Jake.” In the other, a sci-fi action thriller called Boss Level starring Mel Gibson, Naomi Watts, and, Ken Jeong, Gronk plays a helicopter gunner.

If he does make the move to Hollywood on a full-time basis, two Tinsel Town superstars, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Sylvester Stallone, have already told him he could make millions in action films.

Host a Podcast 

Nowadays, pretty much anyone with a fifth-grade education or higher can host a podcast. Gronkowski, who went to Arizona State but also previously admitted he only read 80 percent of the book he co-authored, has at least that (he actually topped 1,000 on his SATs). And, as he showed while reading excerpts from erotic fan fiction novel A Gronking to Rememberhe does know how to read.

While that’s probably not enough to make him a successful host on his own, pair Gronk with a solid partner and you might have an entertaining podcast – albeit not one with a great deal of longevity.

Play in the NFL

At this point, it seems very unlikely that Gronkowski will return to the NFL. However, if he does, it will likely be in a scenario similar to the one former New England Patriots and team insider Willie McGinest floated earlier this month. “I think Gronk is going to take a break for awhile,” he said. “I don’t think he’s going to initially start and come back. I think he’s going to figure it out later on. I think he’s going to start out the season being retired. I think he’s going to get the itch. I think he’s going to be in great shape and he’s probably going to have that feeling that, ‘Hey, I want to come back.’ I think he’s going to let his body heal up.”

Male Stripper

It probably wouldn’t pay enough to make it worth his while, but Gronk has at least shown he’s got some moves.

Play in the XFL, AAF or CFL

Unless he signs with the WWE as mentioned above and would possibly have some financial tie to the Vince McMahon-owned XFL, there’s little chance Gronkowski decides to step back onto the football field for one of these lesser leagues. Nor should he. One is trashy, one is crappy, and the third one is in Canada.