Bill Belichick elaborates on Rob Gronkowski sleeping during pre-draft visit
The legend of retired New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski grew a bit more thanks to a memorable anecdote from his former coach, Bill Belichick.
If you haven’t been tuning in to the NFL Network’s weekly television special revealing the 100 greatest players and coaches from the past 100 years of NFL history, you’ve been missing out. Find a friend or somebody at work who’s been DVR-ing these bad boys and get yourself caught up… it’s been a fantastic show so far.
The premise is simple. NFL Network analyst Rich Eisen, NBC Sports color commentator Cris Collinsworth, and New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick sat down together to go through all of the 100 men who made the final cut to be included in this prestigious ranking. The trio discuss each and every individual, show highlights from their career, and sometimes even bring the people they’re taking about onto the show for interviews.
Prior “guests” on the show the past few weeks have included Jim Brown, Emmitt Smith, Barry Sanders, and Tony Gonzalez, among others.
So far, the NFL 100 All-Time team roster includes 12 running backs, 12 linebackers, seven defensive ends, seven defensive tackles, seven cornerbacks, six safeties, two kickers, two punters, two returners, five tight ends, seven offensive tackles, seven guards, four centers, and eight head coaches. Still to come are wide receivers, quarterbacks, and a couple more head coaches.
For those keeping track at home, there have been four New England Patriots figures named to the list so far: kicker Adam Vinatieri, guard John Hannah, tight end Rob Gronkowski, and head coach Bill Belichick.
We all know that Tom Brady will make the list, and Randy Moss is almost certainly a guarantee as well. If you count Moss as a Patriot, that gives New England six players… five if you consider him a Viking (which is probably what he’ll “go on” as).
During last Friday’s segment on tight ends, Belichick gave audiences an interesting tidbit of information on his former player, Rob Gronkowski, who he coached from 2010-2018. According to Belichick, Gronkowski actually fell asleep on the floor during his pre-draft visit in New England!
“I brought him in and we’re getting ready to meet with the coaches,” Belichick explained during the telecast on the NFL Network. “He fell asleep on the floor.”
Belichick elaborated further on this fascinating (and humorous) story when he joined “Ordway, Merloni & Fauria” on Monday. Here’s what he had to say, courtesy of WEEI’s Ryan Hannable:
"“It wasn’t a great visit, but I think that’s — look, you know how it is traveling around cross-country going from one team to the next, getting MRIs and back x-rays, or whatever. I am sure it got to him. The energy that Rob has as a football player is I would say at a very high level. Maybe not a (Tedy) Bruschi, but it is up there. It’s pretty high and we didn’t see it. In the end once we got him here and once he got in the field, Rob was great. He was great. He had a great career here, but he was a great teammate. Everybody loved him and not because of his (personality) and all that, but just the way he competed and the type of teammate he was. Sometimes the first impression is not always the right one.”"
Somehow or another, this story wasn’t public knowledge until Belichick shared in on television with all the thousands of viewers watching at home. Now it’s just another wonderful chapter in the hilarious saga that is/was Rob Gronkowski’s career as a professional football player… and we’re all better off because of it.