Stephen A. Smith Takes Rob Gronkowski’s Retirement Seriously


Rob Gronkowski is only 28-years-old. In typical NFL history, that would put him right in the prime of a Hall of Fame career. But he has suffered countless significant injuries, missing 26 regular season games in his career so far.

One of the worst injuries on that list was a major concussion suffered following a hit from Barry Church of the Jacksonville Jaguars in the AFC Championship Game.

That concussion, in the eyes of Stephen A. Smith of ESPN, changed the course of Gronkowski’s career forever. He believes that before the head injury, Gronkowski was not considering retirement.
“I don’t think this is something that has been on his mind for the last year or two.

I think that concussion, with all the injuries that he’s had, I think the concussion messed with him. Gronkowski is 6’7’’, so you’ve gotta remember that folks customarily are going to hit low because he’s 6’7’’. So you’ve got all of that to worry about that and then on top of that you’re going to get woozy because you got knocked in the head a couple of weeks ago going through the concussion protocol, we don’t really know the nuances of how invasive that is.

I take his retirement talk very seriously.”

While speculating on what Gronkowski may or may not have been thinking weeks ago is reckless, he wouldn’t be the first player to retire due to concussion concerns.


Most notably, star rookie linebacker Chris Borland retired after the 2014 season over those very same concerns. Gronkowski has a far more extensive injury history to both his brain and the rest of his body.

If he were to walk away right now, fans would understand. He is no doubt one of the greatest tight ends in NFL history and already a near-lock to make the Hall of Fame. He has delivered a championship to his team.

He has done everything he could ever want to do in the NFL. He wouldn’t have said anything if this wasn’t something he was seriously considering.

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