Rob Gronkowski Jokes Patriots 'Pull You' Before Letting Player Hit Performance Bonus

Adam WellsApril 7, 2022

FOXBORO, MA - NOVEMBER 26:  Rob Gronkowski #87 of the New England Patriots reacts with head coach Bill Belichick after catching a touchdown pass during the third quarter of a game against the Miami Dolphins at Gillette Stadium on November 26, 2017 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
Jim Rogash/Getty Images

Rob Gronkowski joked the New England Patriots will sit players if they are close to hitting a performance-incentive bonus.

During an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live (starts at 7:20 mark), Gronkowski said the Patriots "will probably pull you" before you hit an incentive bonus in your contract.

Immediately after making the comment, Gronkowski admitted he "shouldn't have said that" as he was laughing with Jimmy Kimmel. The 32-year-old spent the first nine years of his career with the Patriots from 2010 to 2018.

The topic came up because Gronkowski earned an additional $1 million from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in their final game last season. He hit the required receptions and yardage totals in his contract to trigger the financial incentive.

Adam Schefter @AdamSchefter

Bucs’ TE Rob Gronkowski just caught his 7th pass today, and with his receiving yardage against the Panthers as well, he reached an additional $1 million in incentives.<br><br>Hit both 7 catches and over 85 yards today. $1M earned.

It wasn't a coincidence that Tom Brady was looking in Gronkowski's direction often against the Carolina Panthers.

The five-time Pro Bowl tight end knew during the game how many receptions he needed to hit his contract incentive.


"If I don’t get the seventh catch, I have to go get a real job." 😂<br><br>Gronk knew what he had to do in Week 18. <a href="https://twitter.com/RobGronkowski?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@RobGronkowski</a> (via <a href="https://twitter.com/NFLFilms?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@NFLFilms</a>, <a href="https://twitter.com/insidetheNFL?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@InsidetheNFL</a>) <a href="https://t.co/Z31xRmqjpP">pic.twitter.com/Z31xRmqjpP</a>

Gronkowski finished the game with a season-high 137 receiving yards on seven catches. 

The Bucs attempted to pull Brady from the game midway through the fourth quarter, but he stayed in for the sole purpose of making sure Gronkowski got his seventh catch to earn an additional $500,000.

After the final completion to Gronkowski, Blaine Gabbert replaced Brady on the drive.