Following the past few months of drama around the Patriots locker room, more details continue to leak out.
According to Karen Guregian of the Boston Herald, coach Bill Belichick mocked tight end Rob Gronkowski in front of the team early in the season for participating in the TB12 program. Since the beginning of last season, Belichick’s feelings towards TB12 trainer Alex Guerrero have been extremely negative which all culminated in a feature by ESPN back in January.
Gronkowski did not take the situation lightly, however, and this incident is one of the factors contributing towards his unstable future in New England.
The 28-year-old, who has suffered multiple season-ending injuries during his tenure with the Patriots, started attending the TB12 facility for additional treatment last season. Over the past few months, Guerrero has worked to make Gronkowski “more pliable,” which has caused him to lose some weight.
While Gronkowski played most of his career at 265 pounds, he is closer to 260 now and has some wondering if he still has the body to play tight end. Reports claim that Gronkowski should be back to 265 or higher before training camp, implying that the team isn’t planning on interfering in Gronkowski’s training regiment just yet.
The rumors of Gronkowski’s retirement, or potential trade talks involving him, have slowed down after the Patriots dealt Brandin Cooks to the Los Angeles Rams for a first round pick.
While he is expected to stick around for this season, the tension between Gronkowski and Belichick could result in the Pro-Bowler either finishing his career elsewhere or ending it prematurely in the not-too-distant future.