New England Patriots

GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 01: Head coach Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots hugs  Rob Gronkowski after defeating the Seattle Seahawks during Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium. The Patriots defeated the Seahawks 28-24. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

GLENDALE, AZ – FEBRUARY 01: Head coach Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots hugs Rob Gronkowski after defeating the Seattle Seahawks during Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium. The Patriots defeated the Seahawks 28-24. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)

From the NFL Newswire at 985TheSportsHub.com

Patriots head coach Bill Belichick and owner Robert Kraft have each issued separate statements on former tight end Rob Gronkowski, who announced his retirement from football on Sunday.

Via Adam Schefter, Belichick’s statement reads in part: “It was a pleasure and a privilege to coach Rob Gronkowski for the past nine years. From his rookie year until his final season and through countless times in between, Rob was a major reason why we won games and championships. His elite combination of size, skill, intelligence, toughness, and ability to perform in pressure situations set him apart.”

Kraft statement reads, in part: “As great of a player as [Gronkowski] was, he is an even better person and ambassador of the game. Throughout his career, he made countless appearances in the community and there was no better remedy for hospital patients than a visit from Gronk. Check out both statements in full below:

Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and receiver Julian Edelman each issued brief statements of their own via social media on Sunday.

Gronkowski finishes his NFL career with 521 catches, 7,861 yards, and 80 total touchdowns in just 115 games. He also earned First Team All-Pro honors four times and won three Super Bowl championships with the Patriots. Belichick made sure to note that Gronkowski’s relatively brief burst of brilliance, likely to lead to enshrinement at the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, left a lasting impact on the NFL as a whole.

As Belichick concluded: “Rob will leave an indelible impression on the Patriots organization and the game as among the best, most complete players at his position to ever play.”

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