The thick of the NFL offseason has already arrived which means free agency will soon begin in earnest. Teams cannot contact unrestricted free agents until March 15, exactly two days before the start of the 2021 league year. However, news regarding the top players will circulate before the free agency officially kicks off, and this year’s market could feature big-name talents like Dak Prescott, Chris Godwin, Allen Robinson, and Kenny Golladay. The franchise tag will likely remove one or more from the open market, but more will reach free agency when the legal-tampering period opens.
2020 in review
Until Tom Brady left the New England Patriots to sign with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Rob Gronkowski had little reason to consider coming out of retirement. However, the chance to win another Super Bowl with his longtime quarterback — and notably without the more restrictive environment in New England — Gronk decided to lace up the cleats again.
The four-time All-Pro tight end put up numbers more or less in line with his final season with the Patriots: 45 catches for 623 yards and seven touchdowns. While far from Gronkowski’s best season, few players at the position performed better in 2020 from a statistical standpoint.
Gronk will either play with Brady’s Buccaneers or nobody in 2021.
Do the Buccaneers want to keep him?
All signs point to Gronk and the Buccaneers staying together, at least for another season.
Assuming Gronkowski returns to Tampa, another low-end TE1 season appears reasonably likely. Brady still trusts him more than any other tight end on the roster, and the Buccaneers might move on from Cameron Brate or O.J. Howard due to cap restraints.
While other teams could have interest in Gronkowski, the future Hall of Fame tight end only came out of retirement to play with Brady and add to his ring collection. Gronkowski has given no indication that his motivations have changed, making this effectively a bilateral monopoly.