Chris Simms isn’t quite sure what to expect from Rob Gronkowski in 2020, but he doesn’t see the star tight end putting together just an average campaign.
Simms and “Pro Football Talk” co-host Mike Florio on Thursday picked players who they believe will be “boom or bust” this season, which included the likes of Odell Beckham Jr., Philip Rivers and Jimmy Garoppolo. The former NFL quarterback identified Gronkowski, who ended his NFL retirement after one season to join Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
“I’m gonna go with Gronk. Gronk is boom or bust, to me,” Simms said on NBC Sports. “A little like Odell Beckham Jr., the expectations, of course, are very high, right? So, bust is like, OK, yeah, it’s a good year for a lot of tight ends but not for the greatest tight end in the history of the sport. Let’s not forget, he’s taken a year off from football and his last year playing football it was only 682 yards receiving and three touchdowns.
“So I could see this year being ‘boom,’ 800 yards and nine touchdowns, 10 touchdown catches. Or I could see, man, Gronk has lost a little bit of a step, he’s banged up, he’s having a hard time finding his niche in this offense and it’s like (400), 500 yards receiving and just like two or three touchdowns. I wouldn’t be shocked if it went either way. I don’t think there’s going to be much of a middle ground here.”
While rust very well could be a factor for Gronk in his first season with the Bucs, one has to imagine he won’t experience a shortage of looks. The five-time Pro Bowl selection has nearly a decade worth of experience with Brady, who could lean on his longtime favorite target as he finds his groove in Tampa Bay. Injuries, of course, can happen, but nagging ailments theoretically shouldn’t be an issue for Gronk seeing as he hasn’t been on an NFL field since early February of 2019.
Time will tell what Gronk is able to bring to the table in Central Florida, but he sure sounds excited as ever to haul in passes from TB12 once again.