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Bruce Arians, Tom Brady Get Brutally Honest About Rob Gronkowski

Bruce Arians, Tom Brady Get Brutally Honest About Rob Gronkowski

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers made a big splash this offseason when they signed future Hall of Famer Rob Gronkowski.

Many immediately had visions of Gronkowski and new quarterback Tom Brady replicating their championship success from the good ol’ New England Patriots days.

Through two games – that hasn’t quite happened.

In Week 1 against the New Orleans Saints, Gronkowski caught two passes for 11 yards. In Week 2 against the Carolina Panthers, he didn’t record a single catch.

Through two games, the 31-year-old has been targeted four times.

Part of Gronkowski’s lack of impact is due to Arians-led offenses not asking a ton from their tight ends as it pertains to receiving. The other part is, well, him simply no longer being the player he was.

After all, OJ Howard has recorded noticeably better numbers through two outings. He has been targeted nine times and caught five passes for 47 yards and a score.

This week, Arians was asked about Gronkowski’s role in his offense.

“We’re not throwing the ball 50 times to tight ends – that’s what we have receivers for [and] that’s the way our offense is built,” he said.

“Gronk’s playing great run blocking in the fourth quarter, so I’m not concerned with his pass catches or his targets.”

Beyond that, Arians also pointed to a lack of red zone opportunities as a reason for why Gronkowski has seen less action.

“We haven’t had that many red zone opportunities and I don’t see him running 40 yards past people anymore,” he continued.

“If we get him press coverage, hopefully he can. We brought him in to just play tight end. If that means no catches, it means no catches. If it means 10 catches, it means 10 catches because he’s open and that’s where the ball goes. We just fortified a room with a veteran player, just like we did with A.Q. Shipley.”

Brady, for his part, thinks this is all part of the process.

“Well, I think we all have a lot of things we’ve got to [work on],” he said.

“We’re going to be improving from the time we started until the time we finish the season. I don’t think we can be discouraged by certain things. Some weeks it’s going to be some guy’s week. Other weeks it’s going to be other guys’ weeks. Everyone is working hard at practice to try to find their spot [and] their role.”

As far as Brady is concerned, it will all get sorted out in the end.

“We’ve got to figure out what works, what combinations work, what we do well or what we don’t do well,” he continued.

“That’s just part of the season. You wish everything would be perfect, but that’s just not the reality of football. There are too many things to orchestrate. There are too many moving parts. You’ve just got to figure out ways to win games.

“It starts with eliminating negative plays, turnovers [and] penalties and putting ourselves in good situations to score points. In the end, it’s got to be scoring more points than the other team. If our defense gives up 40, we’ve got to score more than that. If they only give up three, we’ve got to score more than that. You ebb and flow as the season goes.

“Some weeks the defense plays better, some weeks the offense plays better [and] some weeks you get contributions on special teams. Either way, we’ve got to figure out how to win the games when the opportunities present themselves to make them happen — we’ve got to be able to do it.”

Next up for the Buccaneers is a showdown against the Denver Broncos. If Gronkowski doesn’t start seeing more action in that game, it is probably safe to assume that this is how the rest of the year is going to go for him.

Related: Jon Gruden Has A New Nickname For Cam Newton

Anthony Amador

A recent graduate from the University of Texas, Anthony Amador has been credentialed to cover the Houston Texans, Dallas Cowboys, San Antonio Spurs, Dallas Mavericks and high school games all over the Lone Star State. Currently, his primary beats are the NBA, MLB, NFL and UFC.

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