Dana White Reveals Tom Brady, Rob Gronkowski Nearly Joined Raiders

'I worked to put that deal together for Brady and Gronk to come to the Raiders'


Aug 20, 2022

Could Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski have been well on their way to wearing the Black and Silver of the Las Vegas Raiders for the 2020 season?

It certainly appears so after UFC president Dana White told a jaw-dropping story Saturday night about how the two former New England Patriots legends almost wound up as members of the Raiders.

There ended up being only one problem preventing it all from happening, though. According to White, then-Raiders coach Jon Gruden put the kibosh on it all.

“I worked to put that deal together for Brady and Gronk to come to the Raiders, and it was almost a done deal,” White said when appearing on the ESPN telecast the Gronkowski family was hosting for UFC 278. “And at the last minute, Gruden blew the deal up and said he didn’t want him. All hell broke loose, man. It was crazy. Brady was already looking at houses and it wasn’t being said yet that Gronk was coming.

“So, Las Vegas would have had Brady and Gronk the year that the Bucs won the Super Bowl, except Gruden blew the deal up. There’s so much story that goes along with this behind the scenes. I was never going to tell that story until Gronk just said it.”

Gronkowski basically confirmed White’s story that he was ready to come out of retirement to join Brady that season at their first choice in Las Vegas, not Tampa Bay.

“It worked out for the best and I’m glad it did not go through,” Gronkowski said. “It all worked out for the best, man. I’m glad we went to Tampa, man. It just worked out. I love that place.”

Things certainly did work out with Gronkowski and Brady teaming up with the Buccaneers as they won their fourth Super Bowl title together that year.

While Gronkowski is now retired and has time to host shows like the one he did Saturday, Brady is getting set for his third season with the Buccaneers even though the 45-year-old quarterback is on a puzzling absence from training camp.

Brady departing the Patriots, where he spent the first 20 of his career, is already interesting enough. But if he stayed in the conference and went to the Raiders with Gronkowski, it might have been an even bigger story.

Thumbnail photo via Kim Klement/USA TODAY Sports Images
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