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Cameron Brate in awe after first meeting Rob Gronkowski

Buccaneers, Rob Gronkowski

Fans and players alike are all excited for the looming return of Super Bowl champion tight end Rob Gronkowski in the upcoming season. Tampa Bay Buccaneers tight end Cameron Brate admitted that he was indeed a fan of his new teammate.

According to an article by JoeBucsFan.com:

“[Gronk is] someone that I personally looked up to when I was in college,” Brate said. “It’s going to be awesome for O.J. [Howard] and I to kind of just run things through him and really just see the way he works and plays.

“He’s huge. People were talking about how he’s gotten smaller in the offseason. Then, I met him and he’s so much bigger than I am. He’s just a massive dude.”

On March 24, 2019, after nine seasons, Rob Gronkowski announced his retirement from the NFL, at 29 years old. He further elaborated on his decision five months later saying that the pain and injuries he had suffered throughout his career had taken a toll on his mental health.

On April 21, 2020, the Patriots, which still held Gronkowski’s rights even after retirement, traded him to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The deal involved the Bucs receiving a seventh-round pick in exchange for a compensatory fourth-round pick in the recently concluded 2020 NFL Draft. The trade reunited him with his former Patriots quarterback Tom Brady who signed with the Buccaneers a month prior.

Even before reaching the age of 30, Rob Gronkowski has already become one of the game’s most celebrated tight ends. His accomplishments include being the 2011 NFL receiving touchdowns leader, 2014 NFL Comeback Player of the Year, four-time first-team All-Pro member, five-time Pro Bowler and three-time Super Bowl champion.

He has already recorded a total of 7,861 receiving yards on 521 receptions and 79 touchdowns in a span of nine playing seasons thus far. Together with pal Brady, they will lead the new uprise in Tampa Bay starting with a matchup with the New Orleans Saints on September 13.