Rob Gronkowski has been serving as an analyst at Fox Sports for nearly two months now, and in that time, he hasn’t really said anything negative about the Patriots. However, Gronk did offer some interesting thoughts about what it’s like to play for the Patriots over the weekend, including one major complaint that he had during his time in New England.
During the Fox pregame show, Gronk was asked about the fact that Tom Brady has clearly been frustrated with the offense this year, something that . At that point, Gronk revealed that if he had one complaint about his time with the Patriots, it’s the fact that the team made it nearly impossible to enjoy winning during the regular season, because there was always something to improve on.
“You know it’s crazy, they’re 9-1. He’s so frustrated, too,” Gronk said. “It’s like, ‘Yo, you guys are 9-1.’ That’s the one part I don’t miss about being there. Hands down. I’m not going to lie. I don’t miss that.”
Following several different games this year, Brady has looked dejected at his postgame press conference even though the Patriots had won, and it appears that’s the kind of thing that Gronk definitely doesn’t miss. The hard-partying tight end likes to enjoy his wins.
“They win a game last week vs. Philly — we lost to them in the Super Bowl two years ago — they should be happy,” Gronk said. “Instead, you’re sitting there Sunday night like, ‘What did I do wrong?’ No, that’s not the feeling you should have. You should be pumped about the win. Yea, you might not have put up the offensive numbers that you want to put up, but you won the game, enjoy it. Go out the next week, and build off of it.”
It’s an interesting perspective from Gronk, especially considering that he specifically mentioned the loss to the Eagles in the Super Bowl. After that loss, Eagles offensive lineman Lane Johnson said , because no one really has fun playing for the Patriots.
As for Brady, he was asked about Gronk’s comments during an interview on WEEI this week, and he didn’t exactly deny anything Gronk said. As a matter of fact, the Patriots quarterback admitted that one reason it was so nice to have Gronk around was because he was always able to lighten the mood.
“I think everyone deals with things differently and I think that was part of having a guy like Gronk in the locker room that was so great was he approached it like he does,” Brady said. “He always looks at the bright spots in everything. When you have great attitudes like that, it is good to have. He was a great player for us for a long time. We have different challenges that we face and for me personally, I don’t have one emotion after every game. There’s probably five or 10. The moment you catch me is how I will feel at a particular time and sometimes it takes time to digest things and deal with things. Hopefully we can process those by the time the preparation for the next week starts.”
Although Brady has made it clear that he’s been frustrated with the offense this year, he did finally admit that he’s thrilled with the Patriots’ 10-1 start.
“I am happy we’re 10-1,” Brady said. “Like I’ve said, we’re trying to win, and I know things aren’t perfect. We’re just trying to just make improvements and see if we can do a little bit better job every week. When you watch the NFL — we’ve had some late games, we have another late one coming up, but when you watch other teams — the reality is no one is a finished product at this point. Every team is beginning to fight for a position and some teams are clearly out of it and there’s a lot of other teams that are battling. Nobody knows how it’s going to shake out.”
As to why he’s been so critical of the Patriots offense, Brady had a simple answer: It’s his job to do that, and he’s not going to sugarcoat things if he thinks the offense can play better.
“I have a job to do,” Brady said. “I think my job, it’s very important to me. I want us to do as best we possibly can each week, like I always have. Everybody puts a lot into it and you want to see a great performance. When it’s less than that I don’t know what I should feel other than what is authentic to me and what is authentic to my own personal feelings and beliefs about how we should be performing and what we need to do in order to do better.”
The 42-year-old quarterback says the Patriots can still get better, which will mostly involve the team getting better on offense.
“I have 20 years of experience, so I feel like I have some knowledge,” Brady said. “I don’t have all the answers, but I have been around long enough to know what it looks like. I think our guys are trying. We have good attitudes and we work hard. We have a very good team. I think our team will improve as we on offense improve.”
The offense is going to need to improve fast, because the Patriots will be facing two of the four highest-scoring offenses in the AFC over the next two weeks. First, New England will be traveling to Houston to face a Texans team that averages 24.1 points per game, which ranks fourth in the AFC. After that, the Patriots will host a Chiefs team that averages 28.0 points per game, which ranks second in the AFC.