Rob Gronkowski Reveals 'Championship Series NFT Collection' Rare Digital Cards

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistMarch 9, 2021

Tampa Bay Buccaneers tight end Rob Gronkowski (87) looks on during the first half of an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons, Sunday, Jan. 3, 2021, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Kevin Sabitus)
Kevin Sabitus/Associated Press

Tampa Bay Buccaneers tight end Rob Gronkowski will attempt to capitalize on the rise of digital trading cards with the release of five limited edition "Championship Series NFT Collection" cards this week.

Gronk told TMZ Sports the unique collectibles, which include one card for each of his four Super Bowl titles numbered to 87 (his uniform number) and a lone special career highlight refractor card with his autograph, represent the future of the industry.

"I think having digital trading cards now is just gonna be unique and it's gonna blow it out of the water," he said in an interview released Tuesday. "Actual trading cards, I think will always be there, but I think it's leading toward a way where everything's digital."

Auctions for the cards begin Thursday at 7 p.m. ET in the OpenSea.io crypto marketplace. 

The winner of the auction for the career highlight card will also be given the opportunity to attend a Bucs game during the 2021 NFL season and have a meet-and-greet with Gronkowski.

Trading cards have enjoyed a remarkable comeback during the coronavirus pandemic, and the digital industry has started to reach similar levels in recent months, with NBA Top Shot highlight packs becoming an incredibly in-demand item.

Gronkowski worked with artist Black Madre to create his set of cards, per TMZ.

The five-time Pro Bowl selection returned from a one-year retirement to join longtime New England Patriots teammate Tom Brady in Tampa Bay.

He didn't post huge numbers during the regular season, tallying 45 catches in 16 games, but he shined when it mattered most with a pair of touchdown catches in the Buccaneers' 31-9 victory over the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LV last month.

That championship triumph will be commemorated in the card set with the tight end doing his signature "Gronk spike" celebration.

The 31-year-old will go down as one of the top tight ends in history, having already been named to the NFL's 100th Anniversary All-Time Team in 2019, which could make his digital cards a hot commodity.