Rob Gronkowski And Thursday’s Draft

April 21st, 2020

“Jason, what’s the plan now?”

Joe’s going to assume that Rob Gronkowski passed his Bucs physical with flying colors and is ready to be the Hall of Fame player he was — and the guy set to collect $10 million from Team Glazer this season.

For those unaware, Gronkowski is a punishing and willing blocker, a true asset in the run game. The Bucs haven’t had a tight end in that ballpark since Luke Stocker.

So that has Joe wondering whether Gronkowski’s blocking skills might slightly alter the Bucs’ approach in Round 1 of the draft on Thursday.

Will they feel as needy at right tackle if Gronkowsi is in the mix? Joe can’t answer that. But if you believe free agent Joe Haeg is an upgrade from Demar Dotson, and you believe Gronkowski and Tom Brady reprsent huge upgrades, then do the Bucs really need to invest major draft capital at right tackle?

Keep in mind the Bucs without Brady, Gronkowski and Haeg scored the third-most points in the NFL last season, and had the third-most yards, in addition to being ranked fifth in total first downs.

Perhaps, just perhaps, the Gronkowski addition has the Bucs leaning more toward the defensive side of the ball.

92 Responses to “Rob Gronkowski And Thursday’s Draft”

  1. SteveK Says:

    Can’t wait to get a Gronk jersey! Might be my favorite current player. His love fun loving approach to the game reminds me of Favre. Hall of fame talent, and plays like a kid having fun. Baller. Great day for the Bucs.

  2. Christopher Schiefen Says:

    ?!?!?!?! So the Bucs are basically playing Gronk at RT? Your obsession with getting Allen last year and Kinlaw this year is absurd. The Bucs HAVE to get a RT in the first.

  3. EA Says:

    Knowing Gronk’s injury past….signing him should not change their draft approach, go heavy on Oline and a RB the first 3-4 picks.

  4. Tnoles Says:

    The new beast of Dale mabry

  5. Ivan The Insider Says:


    Finally get a franchise RB we’ve needed for years.

  6. Nutterbutter95 Says:

    Okay let us not crown Haeg as a pemanent figure on the line. You still need to upgrade that position. I dont think the plan changes at all. I think all this does is it makes OJ a trade chip that could move us up in round 2 to get the RB we want. I think you trade down in round 1 and trade up in round 2 and we get the OT and RB we need.. Then sprinkle in defensive players like safety. This team is starting to look like a football team!

  7. Tnoles Says:

    The new beast of Dale mabry!

  8. Rod Munch Says:

    The only issue I have with Gronk is the fact that Arians DOESN’T USE THE TE!

    Arians is going to have to switch things up — and to be clear I think he will. But last year you had Brate and OJ, and at the end of the year Evans and Godwin are out, and you still didn’t have Arians using the TE. I just hope he’s really pliable and adjusts for the strengths of the team — and again, I think he will. But it does make me nervous a bit watching last year as you lose Evans and Godwin, with complete garbage at WR past Perriman, and Arians was still using OJ and Brate primarily as blockers.

    But again, I think Arians will make some changes… I hope.

  9. Tnoles Says:

    Wow! We go from nothing to something with Brady and gronk!

  10. Rod Munch Says:

    Schiefen – Licht has found 3 starting offensive lineman in the 2nd and 3rd rounds, he’s actually quite good at scouting the OL and he doesn’t HAVE TO get a RT in the 1st. He should certainly be able to find one in the 2nd, and frankly for a RT, you can often find guys as late as the 3rd (although that is really really pushing it).

    But no, you don’t have to reach to get someone, they need to just play the board. If all the tackles go early, then try to trade down, if they can’t, then take the top WR assuming there isn’t a run on them.

    Want to help your OL? Then make sure you have legit starting WRs, and the Bucs have 2 of them, but start three WRs.

  11. Alvin Scissors Harper Says:

    I assume Cam Brate makes significantly more money than OJ. One of those guys has to be traded now.

  12. Frank Pillow Says:

    They will go RB in Rd.1

  13. Bird Says:

    Go RB clyde with one of top pics.

    Teams will have a hard time bring the house at Brady when you have to cover evans , godwin , gronk and oj / brate
    Impossible to stop with even average run game

    Man. I hope the season is happening
    I dont need fans in stands

  14. Zzbuc Says:

    If gronkowski is an upgrade is yet to be seen!!!
    Risky very risky move!

  15. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Keep the draft priorities…..perhaps move Brate $$$ instead of Howard……pick up a 4th for Brate and lose his salary…..

  16. 123Urout Says:

    Gronk Baby….. It’s party time in Tampa.!!!!!

  17. Bobby M. Says:

    Tua…..I think he’s in play at this point if he’s there at 14. If not, the back from Wisconsin. Howard or Brate are likely on the way out.

  18. King C Says:

    I’m not worried that Arians doesn’t utilize TE’s because it’s more TB12’s offense now
    BUT remember Gronk is a part-time player who often gets injured
    His timeline of playing 1-2 years is similar to TB 12
    Makes me sad that we give up on OJ and now will probably give him away for a bag of chips

  19. Bangkok Buc Says:

    OJ makes less than Brate and still has higher ceiling. Wonder what market for Brate is going into draft???? OJ now has great mentor

  20. LordCornelius Says:

    I’m all for Kinlaw in R1 if he is there. God this is nuts

  21. Dubcity6 Says:

    Joe has a clear agenda. May not notice it because its sub conscious. But that agenda is against drafting OL because joe has made it a huge point that the OL is just fine. Maybe not both joes

  22. Tampa Bay Demon Says:

    SteveK Says:
    “Can’t wait to get a Gronk jersey!”


    Ditto. D@MN!
    We fixed those jerseys JUST in time… hahahaha

  23. killian Says:

    Why not trade for Trent Williams using a combination of picks/Brate/OJ, then draft Taylor in the first after trading down a couple spots?

  24. R.O. Says:

    “Risky Move” a 4th round draft pick? What is the risk?

  25. steve Says:

    So we wont even get credit for winning anything as the Bucs it will all be Patriots lite. This guys is a broken down has been.

    If I am OJ, Ca, hell even Auclair I want out if they got this guy vs keep us as starters

  26. BucAllNight Says:

    I see you Jason… Keep working man!!

    RT, RB, S, DT, QB, WR, G/C

    In Draft and we are good to go!!

    Go Bucs!!

  27. Erick Says:

    1st- Ruggs III or Kinlaw
    2nd- Swift, CEH, or Akers
    3rd- Best OL or S available

    I don’t believe Bucs will go OL in 1st based on Licht and Arians history.

    Add Ruggs III and CEH to this team and offense is borderline unstoppable.

  28. King C Says:

    We need a Right tackle and
    Trent Williams is a 32 yr old Left tackle who will require big $$
    Why give up something for him when you can easily draft an OT who can play RT

  29. Jean Lafitte Says:

    WTF Joe! You keep harping on the 10 mil but you wanted to bring in Fournette? You make a big deal out of the money only when it suits you.
    Why do you and others read things that aren’t there? Fournette earns $4 million this season. That’s not significant, or at least nowhere near as significant as Gronk’s impact on the cap. Joe has no problem with the $10 million. –Joe

  30. Jean Lafitte Says:

    and yes they still should draft a day one starting OT to protect Brady

  31. ATrain Says:

    “”””””G R O N K”””””””””””””

  32. Zzbuc Says:

    RO the risk is he didn’t play for 1 year he had a LONG history of injuries…..and you pay 10mm when salary cap is far from being comfortable.
    If you don’t see risk there…..I do.

  33. Tampabuscsbro Says:

    There is literally risk in everything. we are going all in there is inherent risk in this.


    most teams are always in a tight cap crunch.

  34. Darin Says:

    They dont have to go Oline or anywhere. You buy into the crap you read too much. Let me guess its one of the “big 4”??? Always laugh when other guys go over those media crushes. I wouldnt doubt if 2 of the “big 4” were there and they drafted josh jones if they go tackle. Gota watch football too not just read about it. Haeg can block all of the 2 seconds it takes Brady to toss it.

  35. Casual Observer Says:

    A lot of details to sort through one day before the draft. Interesting times.

  36. Alvin Scissors Harper Says:

    All the strip clubs in Tampa have gotta be thrilled with this move!

  37. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    Gronk has had an entire year to heal, and he was the most physically dominate tight end in recent memory.
    Plus, he is an awesome blocker as well.

  38. Allbuccedup Says:

    Becton at #14 line up next to Gronk lights out.

  39. Joe in Michigan Says:

    We still need an O-Lineman or 2. Not necessarily in the 1st Round.

  40. Bangkok Buc Says:

    Sooo pumped. It has literally been over a decade since the Bucs were relevant and even discussed in NFL circles. Welcome back to Prime Time Bucs Fans. Hope all you whiners out there can pipe down now.

  41. El Buco Realisto Says:

    Now, if the Bucs could trade for Edelman and Coach Belichick, then they might make the playoffs!!!!!!!!! How long before the sheep “realize” that the bucs just dumpster dive the Patriots won’t payoff!!!!!!!!!!!!

    go bucs!!!!!!!!!!

  42. LordCornelius Says:

    man this could all blow up but it’s entertaining as hell

  43. Chris Cotten Says:

    Jason Licht……I hope you read this because you are the F’ing man, you stole Gronk

  44. BacktaBucs Says:

    Tell me this isn’t fun! He isn’t young Gronk, but he will bring some good on the field and the locker room. He11 Yeah! It is good to be a Bucs fan again.

  45. El Buco Realisto Says:

    The sheep are in hog heaven!!!!!!! A coach that talks tough with BS and lies!!!!!!! Heavy action in Free agency and trades for old players that have big names!!!!!!!! This is what gets the sheeps blood going!!!!!! They rather have national media talk recognition than results on the field!!!!!!!

    Enjoy it sheep!!!!!! Bask In the sun now!!!!!!!!!! But there will be a price to pay!!!!!!!!

    go bucs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  46. Christopher Schiefen Says:

    Rod…you seem to think this is a regular draft year. Two numbers for you—-43 & 68. You can’t risk Brady’s health with a maybe pick. Wills & Thomas are borderline locks, Wirfs and Becton riskier, but you need a plug and play NOW.

  47. AlabamaBucsFan Says:

    Makes me now believe that OJ Howard will be traded for a second or third. Gnock was well worth a 4th round draft pick. He most like will stick around for 2 years.

  48. Kansas95Buc Says:

    Said it once and I’ll say it again. Why did we go get a TE when the system in place doesn’t use TE much?

  49. Mike28277 Says:

    We were the 2nd youngest team in the NFL last year, I believe. If Brady and Gronkowski bring their pedigree and work ethic , with JPP, Suh and Evans, we just may change the culture that has been missing for a very long time.

  50. TheBradyBunch Says:

    ZZ maybe you should go look at the success rate of 4th round picks in the NFL. I would say there is absolutely no downside to using a 4th rounder to get Gronk. Chances are whoever the Bucs would get in the 4th would be a special teams player that would never be a starter. Couple that with the fact that the Bucs had two 4th rounders and it is a no brainer.

  51. Bangkok Buc Says:

    This draft is very weak at TE
    Wouldn’t be surprised if either Brate or OJ are traded to move up somewhere in the draft: up to 7 or 8 to get OL or back into 1st to get top RB would make sense

  52. Buc believer Says:

    Watch all the bandwagon fans come out of the woodwork now. I say all of you can kiss my a….

  53. AlteredEgo Say: Your comment is awaiting moderation. Says:

    In the headline article, trading down makes even more sense, we still have to find future replacements for the aged recent names, including QB … Jordan Love would be bold

  54. Buc believer Says:

    Cmon Joe in light of this news how’s about lightening up on the moderation huh?

  55. Bangkok Buc Says:

    Kansas – all this talk about the system not utilizing the TE position doesn’t make sense. You don’t think Arians is clever enough to adjust his plans with Brady at QB and Gronk lined up for the Bucs.

    Come on dude.

  56. SC Bucs Fan Says:

    People complaining the Arians doesn’t use a tight end don’t see the big picture. Brady and gronk know each other it’s not like he’s coming into his system where he is unfamiliar with the quarterback. Brady and gronk will hook up just fine.

  57. WestChap Says:

    I think Joe’s onto something… Kinlaw will be in play if he’s there. I hope they trade down and get another premium pick but that seems to be popular league-wide this year.

  58. Zzbuc Says:

    TheBradyBunch …. AGAIN,the risk in Not in the 4 pick the risk is he’s injuries History, the risk is he is been inactive for a year or so and the risk Osbaldo in the salary cap……

  59. Kansas95Buc Says:

    @Bangkok Buc

    No I don’t. Another guy brought up a good point, when Evans and Godwin were out, BA never called pays for the TE’s. BA has yet to adjust during any game, why would I think he’d change now? Not to mention that Brate has hands and can hold his own

  60. Joe in Michigan Says:

    New England is probably the most TE needy team in the NFL, and O.J. Howard wasn’t included in this deal. Maybe Bill O’Brien will trade something of value for O.J., but it’s not looking good.

  61. Alvin Scissors Harper Says:

    Brady is gonna have lots of freedom to audible into a good situation. This isn’t like having that dummy Jay Miss behind center with his bug eyed eyes because he has no idea what’s going on. There will be plenty of throws to Gronk. Plus, he’s a hell of a blocking tight end. All this for a 4th rounder? Nice job Jason. I might stop calling you Lichtmyballs if you keep this up.

  62. Bangkok Buc Says:

    Kansas – I think Brady is going to change all of that. He’ll have the authority to change plays at the line. Also read Arians agreed to let Brady bring in some plays.

    Stay positive dude. No chance they bring Gronk in just to block or without Arians approval.

  63. Aaron Says:

    I don’t even think the league will allow the Bucs to draft H. Ruggs at 14 at at this point.

    Go Bucs!

  64. BigMacAttack Says:

    Trade down in round 1 a couple times until you’re ready to get the RB. Load up on 2’nd round picks. Draft a DE,RT and Safety in round 2. Grab a QB in round 3.

  65. Dewey Selmon Says:

    Kansas, Brady is the one who has the ability to change any play call while at the LOS. Gronk didn’t come here to block.

  66. Cobraboy Says:

    What an incredible offseason so far!

    If you had told me in January the Bucs would sign their front seven AND acquire Brady and Gronk, I would have said: “Drugs are bad, MmmKay?”

  67. geno711 Says:

    I want the right tackle in the 1st round. But if one of the 4 is not there then do not reach for one in the 1st. Also, I believe the drop off is great so do not reach then for one in the 2nd or 3rd.

    Unfortunately that may piss off fans but you cannot get too far away from BPA in early rounds just to fill a position. Ok to do that 4th round on. But not on those premium picks.

  68. Joeypoppems Says:

    I think it could eliminate the need to move up for an OT. I still think they draft one in the top 50.

  69. Rod Munch Says:

    Now this is interesting, on ESPN I heard them say they asked about the size of Gronk, since he’s a lot more slim than he was previous – and they claim that’s not an issue since the Bucs plan on using him more as a receiver.

    Humm. Not sure how I feel about that. Gronk was a pretty good blocking TE, it got overshadowed by his pass catching, but out of Brate, OJ and Gronk, it would be Gronk that is the best blocker, by far. Making him more of a receiver helps tremendously with that super weak 3rd WR slot, but doesn’t seem to play to his strength.

    But who knows, ESPN is fake news most of the time, so they could just be repeating what they heard someone say that someone overheard someone talk about while they on the phone with someone who knows something.

    In any case, I love the move.

  70. Elita Vita Says:

    Ok Licht/Arians this is the time of great importance….Now is the time to get the very best OT AND RB…. no hedging, no compromising…ALL IN THIS YEAR!!! Go Bucs!!!!

  71. Rod Munch Says:

    For those worried, here’s how the Bucs can create money…

    Mike Evans makes $17.9m this year. His contract next year goes down to $13.4m – it’s the way Licht does deals, they often decrease in value on certain years. Evans in 2022 and 2023 of 15.2m and 15.7m. Those numbers for the next 3 years are super attractive for a #1 WR – but it’s also an obvious place where Licht could redo a deal.

    Lavonte David is in the last year of his deal, he’s making $10.7m. This is a no brainer, extend David for like 5 years (yes, 5 years), give a big signing bonus, low salary. Do I expect David to play 5 more years at a high salary? Probably not – but you sign Brady to win now, and who cares about the cap 3 years from now. Deal with it in 3 years.

    Ryan Jensen is making $10m this year and next. I personally am not a big fan of him, I don’t think he’s nearly as good as some here think he is, but if the Bucs are sold on him, then you extend him, same as with David, give a big signing bonus to bring down his yearly salary.

    William Gholston is making $4.75m. Now he actually played a lot of snaps, so I wouldn’t just let him go, even if I don’t think he’s good, he’s an acceptable starter and not making big money for a starting d-lineman. But say they got a d-lineman in the draft with a high pick, this is where they might consider making a move of just cutting him at no cap hit. I don’t think that would happen, but it’s an option.

    Donovan Smith is making $14.5m this year and next. I really don’t think they’d extend him, but if they needed to, again, resign him to a long deal, give him a big signing bonus and bring his yearly rate down. I think it’s more likely the Bucs look to replace him in the draft this year or next – and to be clear I’m not down on Smith, but you have to find money somewhere. They can’t cut him this year in any case, so an extention or redoing his deal are the only options.

    So there’s some thoughts on how you make cap space.

    In other words, don’t worry about cap space.

  72. Elita Vita Says:

    Fun Fact: Gronk is only 2 yrs and 2 months older than Brate.

  73. Mike Johnson Says:

    Bucs will be lucky to get 9 games out of Gronk. 9 games for 10 mil. Not bad Gronk.

  74. Rojas Says:

    If the top 4 tackles are gone. I’d take Kinlaw if not trade back and get more picks and draft a RB.

  75. lambchop Says:

    The Bucs gave up the 2nd 4th Round pick which was the compensatory pick we were awarded.

    This deal is LIT. With 1 year off, a new team, his QB, and a cast of future HOFers on this offense, Gronk can get some rest and not be the focal point.

    I wouldn’t even mind just seeing him in redzone packages. If this season is a go, this team will feel like legit ballin on Madden.

  76. Pewter Power Says:

    The people would call for Arians head if he brought in Gronk at 10 million and use him the way they used Howard.

  77. Joe in Michigan Says:

    I like the Nostradumba$$es that can see into the future and know how many games Gronk will play this year. Way to wish bad things on your team and it’s players, Mr. Sunshine! Hahaha

  78. Statguy Says:

    F it. I’d grab Ruggs in the 1st and Dobbins or which ever Rb is good left in the second. Talk about stacked

  79. 541BucsFan Says:

    Does Gronk help OJ elevate his game?

  80. Bucs Guy Says:

    Absolutely a stupid move. One of Licht’s all time worst as a GM. I’m a Bucs fan so I hope it works out though.

    You could have got Gronk for nothing because he’ll never play for the Pats again, but instead you trade valuable capital in this year’s draft, reduced any return the Bucs could get for OJ and used all of the remaining salary cap the team has all in one move to get an admitted out of shape individual who hasn’t played a down in over a year.

  81. mark2001 Says:

    Realisto.. when Madden was asked about the price paid for Gruden, he said to win a SB was worth everything we gave for Gruden. Without a doubt. If this gives our team a chance to play in the SB, and have a shot to be world champion, it will be worth the price paid to get us there. Period.

  82. Buc4evr Says:

    This is insane. Is this really the Bucs? All we need is an RT, RB and a safety in the draft. A oh and while we are at it, sign Gostkowski as our new kicker.

  83. lowercaseg Says:

    Go Bucs

  84. Capt.Tim Says:

    I think you are right, Joe. Gronk takes alot of Pressure off the Right tackle.
    Gronk plays on the line like a tackle

  85. NDog is an idiot Says:

    NDog just wanting JayMiss back!

  86. TheBradyBunch Says:

    While I have lived in Tampa the last 20 years, I grew up in Orlando and I remember how incredible it was when the Magic had Shaq and were able to draft Penny Hardaway the following year. This year in Tampa feels as exciting as it was to be in Orlando back then. Damn this is exciting and we haven’t even gotten to the draft where some huge components can still be added to this team. I am hoping for Becton in the first and CEH in the 2nd. Who the hell would be able to stop this offense!

  87. Nate Says:

    this is all smoke before the draft thats why there announcing it now!!!

  88. Defense Rules Says:

    Wow, just wow. Part of me is excited to have yet another big receiver on the squad, but another part says what in heaven’s name were they thinking. Bucs NEED a RT, a RB, a #3 WR, a Safety and a real backup QB. We have the draft plus maybe $10 mil in salary Cap to work with.

    So of course we sign a retired, often-injured, 31-year-old Tight End for $10 mil. Makes perfect sense; we’re the Bucs. Gronkowski was a beast when he was healthy, but in his last 3 seasons (2018 being the last time he played) he averaged slightly less than 12 games played in per season. And in those 3 years he averaged 72 targets, 47 catches & a tad less than 5 TDs per year. OJ or Brate could’ve averaged that this year with Brady throwing to them. Sorry, but this was done to generate buzz & sell tickets.

  89. Christopher Schiefen Says:

    Bucs Guy…the Patriots were never letting him go, especially since the minute he unretired to be released he’d hit the Patriots’ salary cap at 9 million, which is 8 more million than they have right now. Odds are even two years of Gronk are more valuable than any fourth round pick. You guys are thinking of the natural team building while this team is going all in for two years. Being the worst franchise in the history of sports, I’ll gladly take just one more Super Bowl. Only difference between this and the Gruden year is Mike Greenberg is a way better capologist than John Idzik and Rick McKay so we’ll be fine after this big run.

  90. Rod Munch Says:

    Defense Rules – I’ve been yelling as loud as anyone that the Bucs need to draft a #3 WR at the top of the draft, but this might have saved us the problem. If Gronk is primarily a receiver, well I don’t think that’s the best use of him, but he’s a hell of a receiver. If the Bucs (hopefully) keep him at TE, then in my mind, you tell Howard to lose some weight and play outside. What an insane match-up problem OJ would be outside – and he has the speed to pull it off, and showed in years 1 and 2, he can catch the ball. Plus not worrying about blocking should make him even better. IF they go that route, and to be clear I doubt they will, I love it.

    Obviously they can still flip OJ or Brate for something. I don’t think it will be as much as people think, but even a 4th wipes out this trade. Then in turn you’re back to square one.

    Also the Bucs don’t need a RB, there’s a ton available that cost only the vet minimum. A ton.

  91. Defense Rules Says:

    Rod … I made a career of thinking outside the box, but right now it looks like this box is surrounded by quicksand. I’m sorry, but you don’t build a TEAM that lasts by getting rid of quality young players and substituting injury-prone over-30 vets.

    Gronkowski WAS an incredible TE. But he took a beating & in his last 3 years wasn’t the same as he’d been earlier. He’s now been out of football for well over a year, is now 31 (in a few days), can’t train as he should right now because of this virus, is on a new team & in a different offensive system, AND … there’s still only ONE FOOTBALL.

    To go all the way, the Bucs MUST fill their starting holes AND stay healthy because in some position groups our DEPTH is less than optimal. Such as at QB? Or RB? Or WR? Or OLine? Or DLine? Or Secondary? And yes, we do NEED to add 2 quality RBs if we expect to keep Brady alive. If opposing defenses even smell that our running game is the pits or that our OLine can’t protect him, they’ll unload on him, just like they did on Jameis last year. Looks to me like we play some pretty good defenses this year.

  92. unbelievable Says:

    The guy was riddled with injuries and concussions his last few seasons, hasn’t played in over a year and has lost a ton of weight.

    He’s came to Tampa bc his agent drew told him it would be an easy 10 mil paycheck to hang out in Florida.

    You’re delusional if you think he’s gonna be anywhere close to the HOF level he was once was. Sorry fans.