Let’s not beat around the bush: This is a story about Rob Gronkowski and what might be one last “69” joke.

OK, let’s get this over with.

As you may or may not know, the New England Patriots tight end is known to make anything and everything about the world’s most inappropriate number. And, when he announced his retirement Sunday in an Instagram post, Gronkowski might have cracked one last crude joke.

Hats off to Bottlegate for possibly uncovering this hidden code:

Let’s take a look at the excerpt in question:

“It all started at 20 years old on stage at the NFL draft when my dream came true, and now here I am about to turn 30 in a few months with a decision I feel is the biggest of my life so far. I will be retiring from the game of football today. I am so grateful for the opportunity that Mr. Kraft and Coach Belichick gave to me when drafting my silliness in 2010. My life experiences over the last 9 years have been amazing both on and off the field.”

Now, we have a hard time believing that Gronkowski is savvy enough to insert this joke in such a secretive away. No disrespect to one of the greatest tight ends in NFL history — who is much sharper than people give him credit for — but that’s some next-level trolling few on this planet are capable of.

And, judging by the numerous grammatical errors in his post, it’s safe to say this farewell message didn’t receive a once-over before hitting the internet. So, either Gronkowski knew what he was doing and did it alone, or we’re making something out of nothing.

The answer probably is the latter, but your guess is as good as ours.

Thumbnail photo via Noah K. Murray/USA TODAY Sports Images