New England Patriots star Rob Gronkowski flew to New York Saturday to watch a 3-year-old colt named Gronkowski race in the Belmont Stakes.
Before taking off from Hanscom Field in Bedford, the Patriots tight end spoke to NBC10 Boston’s Kevin Walsh about trade rumors, Julian Edelman’s suspension, his contract and more.
When asked about the recent trade rumors swirling around him, Gronkowski said he didn’t even hear about it until later at night.
“It just shows how much fake news is out there, I mean it definitely was not happening one bit so I have no clue how that gets started or anything.”
Walsh proceeded to ask if it was tough for him to hear his name in credible conversations about trades.
“Not really because I just talked to the main office, the front office at the Patriots all the time and I know what’s going on.”
Gronkowski’s contract has also been a hot topic this off season, and reportedly had been the reason for his absence at the team’s voluntary offseason workout program.
So, does he want a new contract?
"Um I’m not really worried about that right now, I’ve got this horse race going on so just cheering it on and hopefully it goes well," he replied. "And that’s just something that will be played out next week. I mean it’s the weekend now so just enjoying the time now."
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When pressed by Walsh to see if work is currently being done on a new contract, however, Gronk said, “It’s always being done, every single year, so we’ll just how it goes.”
While many have speculated Gronkowski’s unhappy or that his relationship is strained with some in the Patriots organization, namely Bill Belichick, Gronkowski said he's in a great place.
"I’m in a good place, I had a great week, great minicamp, solid guys, had great practice reps so I’m in a great place," he said.
But is he happy with the situation in New England?
“Yes, Oh, I’m happy, I’m super happy, yeah,” the 29-year-old said.
And what about the recent ESPN report that Julian Edelman has been suspended four game for violating the NFL’s performance enhancing substances policy? Has Gronkowski talked to his teammate?
“Uh no I haven’t but it’s an unfortunate situation, but he’s a hard worker and he’ll have to speak for himself,” Gronkowski said.
Edelman apologized on Instagram Friday for his recent positive test for performance enhancing substances, saying he doesn’t know what happened.
While some may find that hard to believe, Gronkowski said mistakes can happen.
“Mistakes do happen. I’ve made plenty of mistakes in my life so I just gotta learn from them and it’s just a situation that we hope the best.”
Another notable talker this offseason has been Gronkowski and quarterback Tom Brady’s absences at OTAs. Both were at mandatory minicamp this past week, however, and Gronk said minicamp was great.
“It was cool. It was just fun to be back out there with the boys, it was a good three days, got a lot of great work in, didn’t miss a beat.”
With OTA’s resuming next week, will Gronkowski be there?
“We’ll see how this race goes. If my horse wins then I don’t know. Yeah, you never know.”
But if his horse loses? Gronk remained non-committal.
“Oh, I don’t know either. I’ll have to talk to the horse.”
That horse in question is among several trying to challenge Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner Justify to prevent him from becoming the sport’s 13th Triple Crown winner.
Gronkowski has a “decent” stake in the colt and said the horse’s name is when his love of horse racing really began.
“The true love for it was when they named the horse after my last name because that’s when it made it more interesting,” he said.
Gronkowski was headed to the race to meet the horse for the first time and said as someone with a stake in the colt, his obligation is to celebrate if there’s a big victory.
Gronk, who has never been to the Belmont, was hoping his namesake horse will have a good race.
“Hopefully, obviously cross your fingers that Gronkowski the horse wins.”
What if Gronkowski the horse wins the Belmont? Gronk said there will be an awesome celebration.