Rob Gronkowski's agent sidesteps contract issue


Rob Gronkowski's agent sidesteps contract issue

BOCA RATON – Drew Rosenhaus, the agent for Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski, refused comment Sunday morning when I asked him whether the tight end was dissatisfied with his contract.

“Not talking about that, I appreciate you asking but not getting into that,” said Rosenhaus while working the lobby at the Boca Raton Resort and Golf Club where the NFL Owner’s Meetings are being held.

Gronkowski sent out a tweet on March 8 that alleged he was taking a pay cut when the Patriots picked up an option that keeps him tied to the team through 2019. He pulled his punch at the end of the tweet, indicating he doesn’t play for the money.

But while his compensation may not be the foremost reason he plays, it’s obviously on his mind if he sends out a message about it.

And Rosenhaus – one of the most hands-on agents in the business – would be well aware of Gronk’s disposition on this.

A comment from Rosenhaus could easily quell any concerns about an agitated Gronk. He passed.

An unexplored aspect of Gronkowski’s cage-rattling may be that he’s miffed at Rosenhaus. The six-year, $54M extension Gronkowski signed in 2012 had its advantages in giving a player with a history of back issues Gronk security. But it also allowed the Patriots to pick up the back half of Gronk’s deal with a $10M option payout this year. Picking up that option locked Gronk in at a below-market rate. That doesn’t look that awesome for Rosenhaus, especially when Gronk is sending out passive-aggressive tweets about it.

If Gronk’s going to get the deal reworked, it will require the Patriots to be uncharacteristically proactive in addressing a contract that – in essence – just began and has four years to go.

NFL Rumors: Patriots free up millions in cap space from Antonio Brown, Aaron Hernandez grievances

NFL Rumors: Patriots free up millions in cap space from Antonio Brown, Aaron Hernandez grievances

The New England Patriots just got whole lot of financial breathing room.

The Patriots have earned a total of $6.25 million in settlements from compensation grievances involving former wide receiver Antonio Brown and ex-tight end Aaron Hernandez, ESPN's Mike Reiss and Field Yates reported Saturday.

New England now has $7.79 million in cap space, per Reiss and Yates, a huge bump from the less than $500,000 in spending money the team had earlier this week.

Brown, who spent less than two weeks with the Patriots last September, filed a grievance against the team in October 2019 following his release seeking to receive his unpaid Week 1 salary, his $1.025 million guaranteed base salary and his $9 million signing bonus.

Download the MyTeams app for the latest Patriots news and analysis

The Patriots will pay Brown $5 million as part of the settlement, per Reiss and Yates.

The NFL Players Association filed a grievance against the Patriots on Hernandez's behalf in October 2013 seeking over $6 million in guaranteed salary. Hernandez was arrested and later convicted for the 2013 murder of Odin Lloyd and died in prison in April 2017.

New England was up against the cap after squeezing free-agent quarterback Cam Newton in on a one-year contract and inking all of its 2020 NFL Draft picks to rookie deals. With nearly $8 million in cap space, however, the Patriots have more flexibility to bolster their roster via free agency or trade.

Our Patriots Insider Tom E. Curran suggested tight end David Njoku could be a strong fit in New England after requesting a trade from the Cleveland Browns, and there are a number of quality free agents still on the market, as well.

Patriots TE Devin Asiasi joins Cam Newton, N'Keal Harry for workouts

Patriots TE Devin Asiasi joins Cam Newton, N'Keal Harry for workouts

Twelve days ago, Cam Newton was still a free agent looking for work.

But ever since he agreed to a one-year contract with the Patriots, he's been very busy trying to get ready for the 2020 season, learning the playbook and developing chemistry with his new receivers.

Download the MyTeams app for the latest Patriots news and analysis

In addition to N'Keal Harry, whose workout with Newton was captured on video, rookie tight end Devin Asiasi was also catching passes from New England's new quarterback. Twitter user amirmehrtash15 took pictures with both Asiasi and Newton at the UCLA practice session and posted them in reponse to the Providence Journal's Mark Daniels.

The workout wasn't limited to Patriots, as Browns wideout Odell Beckham Jr. was also in attendance.

Newton trying to fast-track a relationship with his new teammates makes perfect sense. He set up his first practice with Mohamed Sanu on the day he signed his Patriots contract, and in less than two weeks, he's already connected with three of the guys who will be among his top receiving options in 2020.

The Patriots certainly hope all that extra work pays off, as training camps could open as soon as the end of this month once the NFL and NFLPA can finalize preseason dates.