Tom Brady is maniacal in his film study. Rob Gronkowski? Not so much.
While chatting with Peyton and Eli Manning on ESPN2’s “Monday Night Football” simulcast, the former New England Patriots tight end revealed he simply does not watch game film unless his team puts it in front of him.
Gronkowski, who’s now in his second season with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, was asked what he looks for when he studies an upcoming opponent. Scheme? Matchups?
“My teammate (fellow Bucs tight end) Cam Brate just asked me the other day,” Gronkowski replied. “He goes, ‘Rob, I have a serious question.’ He goes, ‘Do you ever watch film?’ And I said, ‘No, I don’t. I just run by guys. If I’m feeling good, I’m feeling good.’ So, I don’t know how to answer that. I don’t watch film. But I do watch film when the team is showing it, and every once in a while, I watch games like right now and study them.”
Gronkowski said he gets most of his opponent-based information from Brady, with whom he’s played his entire NFL career.
“I actually do go up to Tom, because I know Tom watches I don’t know how many hours of film a week,” Gronkowski told the Mannings. “I go, ‘Tom, who’s covering me this week? What type of coverages are they doing?’ That’s why I love playing with him.”
While that approach surely isn’t one Bill Belichick would endorse, it’s hard to argue with the results. Gronkowski is a surefire Hall of Famer, and after a relatively quiet debut season in Tampa, he’s been excellent so far in 2021. Through two games, he has 12 receptions on 13 targets for 129 yards and has caught four of Brady’s nine touchdown passes.
Gronk and Brady will make their much-anticipated returns to Gillette Stadium when the Bucs visit the Patriots in Week 4.