NFL Analyst Suggests How Patriots Should Handle Rob Gronkowski Contract Negotiations

The New England Patriots have gotten a pretty good bang for their buck when it comes to Rob Gronkowski’s services.

Though Gronk often is regarded as the best tight end in the NFL, New England has gotten away with simply adding incentives to allow him to cash in. Gronkowski netted the most cash of any tight end in the league last season by meeting multiple incentives.

Amid retirement rumors earlier in the offseason, so came discussion of tweaking Gronkowski’s contract, with the latest rumors of a somewhat revamped deal breaking earlier in the week.

But as the Patriots negotiate, should they aim to keep Gronk’s contract tethered to a similar framework?

Opining on, Ex-NFL player and scout Bucky Brooks suggested that despite Gronkowski’s deservingness, the Patriots should try to keep him on incentive-laden deals.

Here’s his reasoning:

“With (Jimmy) Graham signing a three-year, $30 million deal (including $11 million in guarantees) with the Green Bay Packers this offseason, Gronkowski certainly wants to land a contract or extension that pays him above the $8.91 million he’s currently slated to earn in 2018.

New England is right to acquiesce to Gronk’s desire to have a little more cheese added to the burger. The NFL’s best tight end is also the Patriots’ top deep threat, and Tom Brady leans on him in critical situations. …

While there’s no disputing Gronkowski’s importance to the team, it is hard to reward an oft-injured player who has played fewer than 400 snaps in two of the team’s last five seasons. Thus, it is sensible for the Patriots to continue to sign the soon-to-be 29-year-old to a series of “pay as you play,” incentive-laden deals that force the five-time Pro Bowler to earn his money on the field.”


It is no secret the value Gronkowski brings in every facet when he’s on the field. So even with Brooks’ suggestion, the Patriots obviously would be well-advised to try and keep the 28-year-old around.

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Thumbnail photo via Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports Images

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