Rob Gronkowski was expected to be a key player for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2022, but the five-time Pro-Bowl tight end made a very Gronk-like move earlier this offseason and announced his retirement from the NFL.

Gronk is only 33. And he’s retired from the NFL before (he didn’t play in 2019), so I don’t think anyone would be surprised if his retirement is short-lived.

Some folks close to Gronkowski, in fact, are expecting the former Arizona star to return to the field soon.

Camille Kostek, Gronkowski’s girlfriend, recently suggested that Gronk is just “having fun” and that his retirement isn’t “forever”.

Gronk is definitely a wild card. Predicting his next move can be a futile exercise. But I think his girlfriend is probably right.

Not only does she know Gronkowski better than almost anyone, but it certainly feels like Gronk is just taking some time off this summer before eventually returning to the Buccaneers.

Gronk being retired means he doesn’t have to worry about reporting to training camp later this month. It also means he doesn’t have to worry about meaningless pre-season games. He can enjoy his summer and then return to the team just before the start of the season. It’s a very Gronk-like move that will work for him because he’s played with Tom Brady for so long. These two don’t need training camp time together to hit on all cylinders.

I wouldn’t be totally shocked if Gronk stays retired, but I tend to think that we’ll see him on the field again at some point. Maybe even in week one this fall.

Featured image via Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports