New England Patriots superstars absent from start of offseason program


New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and tight end Rob Gronkowski will not be participating in the early portions of the team’s workouts.

The New England Patriots offseason workout program began this week. These workouts are voluntary, so there is no penalty for not showing up. As a result, some players choose to not participate or show up at all.

For a team that is as tight a ship as New England, you would think that everyone would participate. However, they even have some players, even very prominent ones, not report for the workouts.

Two of the biggest named Patriots are going to be absent from the beginning of the workouts. Quarterback Tom Brady and tight end Rob Gronkowski both aren’t going to be around at the start, but for different reasons.

Brady is on a business trip in Qatar. Normally, he is a participant in the workouts, but this time he is away taking care of other business.

It was something that Bill Belichick seemed ready for when discussing the workouts last week.

“We have the voluntary offseason program that starts on Monday,” Patriots coach Bill Belichick said last week. “It will be heavily attended, but I know there are a couple players that I’ve talked to that have other commitments, but that’s the way it always is. So, not really anything new there.”

While Brady is on business out of the country, Gronkowski’s reasoning for not attending is more complicated. Gronkowski is still contemplating if he will play this season. His hesitation must be legitimate, as Gronkowski is passing on a $250,000 workout bonus in his contract.

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All of this could be a decision by Gronkowski to peacefully protest his current contract. Gronkowski will earn a base salary of $8 million for the 2018 season. That makes him the highest paid tight end in the NFL, but he is still criminally underpaid given his production on the court.

There has been some friction between the Patriots and Gronkowski this offseason. Gronkowski has been working with Alex Guerrero, the trainer who has caused some problems in the past as well.

Despite all the mystery surrounding Gronkowski’s status, Adam Schefter reports that the two sides have had good communication.

Until Gronkowski reports or provides an update on his future, there will still be plenty rumors about whether he will return or not. What the Patriots do during the 2018 NFL Draft could give some insight into whether Gronkowski will be returning or not.

With Brandin Cooks being traded to the Los Angeles Rams and Danny Amendola leaving for the Miami Dolphins, the Patriots could really use Gronkowski in the lineup this season.





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