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Rob Gronkowski not upset after slow start with Bucs: ‘I came here to block, baby!’

Ryan Young
·Writer
·2-min read

Rob Gronkowski has turned over a new leaf in Florida.

Gronkowski has just two catches so far this season with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and been targeted only four times by Tom Brady.

That role isn’t one that he is used to — or one that fans are used to seeing after his dominant offensive stint in New England, where he compiled four 1,000-yard seasons and 79 touchdowns with the Patriots.

Still, Gronkowski is embracing it in Tampa.

Well, he’s in on the joke at least.

“I’m a blocking tight end. I came here to block, baby!” Gronkowski said Friday, via the Tampa Bay Times. “So four targets is four more than I thought I was going to get.”

Gronk: ‘I didn’t forget’ how to catch

Buccaneers coach Bruce Arians addressed Gronkowski’s slow start earlier this week, though he didn’t sound too concerned.

His new tight end is 31 years old, after all, and the Bucs have plenty of high-profile options for Brady offensively. And, it’s been only two games. He isn’t going to force anything just yet.

“We haven’t had that many red zone opportunities, and I don’t see him running 40 yards past people anymore,” Arians said this week.

“We brought him in to just play tight end. If that means no catches, that means no catches. If it means 10 catches, it means 10 catches because he’s open and that’s where the ball goes.”

The Bucs will take on the Denver Broncos on Sunday, where Gronkowski will have another chance to live up to his past outings in New England.

However, he isn’t putting any pressure on it.

“I didn’t forget [how to catch],” Gronkowski said, via the Tampa Bay Times. “But every game plan can change differently week in, week out. And there’s sometimes in my career I would be targeted 15 times and there’s other times I’d be targeted for just a few. It all depends on how defenses are playing us. How the defenses are lining up against us. Who they’re taking away.

“It’s just two weeks into the season, so I’ve just got to go out there and keep on fighting, you know? Just give it my all in whatever aspect of the game it is.”

Rob Gronkowski of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Tampa Bay tight end Rob Gronkowski has just two catches for 11 yards so far this season. (Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

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