Earlier today, Rob Gronkowski announced his retirement from the NFL. Gronk had already retired a few years ago but he eventually came back so that he could play with Tom Brady in Tampa Bay. Throughout his career, Gronk was able to win four Super Bowls with Brady as his quarterback, and it became clear that the tight end didn’t want to play with anyone else.

To announce his retirement, Gronk took to Instagram with a lengthy message about just how much he loves the game. It was always Gronk’s dream to someday play in the NFL, and he was able to accomplish that in the best way possible.

Per Gronk:

“In college, I was asked to write about a dream job opportunity that I wanted to pursue and where the location would be. Every time I had to write about my future, no matter what, I picked being a professional football player. For that assignment though, we had to pick the location. So I wrote that I wanted to play in Tampa for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, for many reasons, the sunny weather beingย #1. I completely forgot about writing this report until 2 years ago when I had the opportunity to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. And let me tell ya, the journey in Tampa over the last 2 years has blown away what I originally wrote about in college, big time. And for this, I want to thank the whole entire first class Buccaneers organization for an amazing ride, trusting me to come back to play and help build a championship team. I will now be going back into my retirement home, walking away from football again with my head held high knowing I gave it everything I had, good or bad, every time I stepped out on the field. The friendships and relationships I have made will last forever, and I appreciate every single one of my teammates and coaches for giving everything they had as well. From retirement, back to football and winning another championship and now back to chilling out, thank you to all. Buccaneers fans, the Krewe, without you guys, none of this is possible, all of ya brought it every game, thank you for all you do. Cheers to whatโ€™s next, maybe sailing the seas. Arghhhhhh!!”

Following his announcement, Tom Brady himself decided to offer some words for his former teammate. As you can see, Brady appreciated his time with Gronk, and he understands that Rob is a teammate he will never have again. They flourished together and their chemistry is some of the best we have ever seen from a single QB-TE duo. It was a touching tribute that truly lets us know we have hit the end of an era in football history.

Per Brady:

“Teammate, friend, brother, just a few of the words that come to mind when I think ofย @gronk. Nobody has ever embodied the idea of โ€œleaving it all out on the fieldโ€ like Rob has throughout his entire career. Every single snap, I knew that no matter how many people you put in front of him, he was going to get to his spot.

Even more important is the person he was off the field. Focused when he had to be, and FUN the rest of the time. Having Gronk in your locker room was every NFL players dream. Iโ€™m proud of all that weโ€™ve accomplished together, and even more excited for all you have ahead of you.

Congrats Gronk, you deserve it.”

Gronk will certainly have a lot of fun in retirement as he is known for being a huge party animal. As for whether or not he decides to come out of retirement, that still remains to be seen.