Schefter adds that Gronkowski still is considering whether to play the upcoming 2018 season, but he has had “good communication” with the Patriots.
Mike Reiss points out that Gronkowski has a $250,000 workout bonus in his contract for the 2018 season that’s based on the percentage of workouts he attends.
Gronkowski has been weighing retirement because of physical and mental fatigue, but Darlington says he’s still more likely to be back. According to Darlington, there has been “lingering frustration” between Gronkowski and HC Bill Belichick along with some other members of the organization.
Gronkowski’s name surfaced as a potential trade candidate this offseason. However, Schefter reported that New England will not be trading Gronkowski, especially after the team send WR Brandin Cooks to the Rams a few weeks ago.
Gronkowski, 28, is a former second-round pick of the Patriots back in 2010. He is in the sixth year of his eight-year, $55.23 million contract that included $13.17 million guaranteed.
Gronkowski has outplayed this contract by a mile and was one of the most underpaid players in the NFL. He was set to make base salaries of $4.25 million (2017), $8 million (2018) and $9 million (2019) over the remainder of the contract when he agreed to a restructured contract this summer.
In 2017, Gronkowski appeared in 14 games and caught 69 passes for 1,084 yards receiving and eight touchdowns for the Patriots.
We’ll have more regarding Gronkowski as the news is available.