Buccaneers: Rob Gronkowski is emerging as a legitimate threat

(Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images) Rob Gronkowski
(Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images) Rob Gronkowski /

The Buccaneers are seeing an emerging offensive weapon threat in Gronk

While there were plenty of naysayers when he joined the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, there’s no doubt that Rob Gronkowski is making an impact on the Bucs’ offense.

Gronk- who took a year off from football before ultimately coming back following a trade from the New England Patriots to the Buccaneers- spent the entirety of his offseason working to get back in ‘football shape.’

There were times where Gronkowski struggled- notably when Bruce Arians said he wasn’t taking the Florida heat well- and there were plenty of obstacles to overcome, but the truth of the matter is that he is making a difference for Tampa Bay and that’s only going to be amplified in the coming weeks.

Gronkowski is going to make an impact on the Buccaneers moving forward- for good or for bad

With O.J. Howard out for the season due to an Achilles injury, the Bucs are down to two tight ends who’ll see the majority of time at the position: Gronkowski and Cameron Brate.

Though Gronk was extremely quiet during the first two games of the season- against the Saints and Panthers- where he caught just two passes for 11 yards, he has become a more legitimate receiving threat in the past couple of weeks with six catches for 48 yards against the Denver Broncos and then had a 29-yard reception against the Chargers this past week.

But it’s more than just the receiving game.

Gronkowski has been noticeably becoming more physical and winning more battles in his blocking game. He’s not by any means a liability in run-blocking and is clearly stepping into his own as he grows more comfortable in the offensive system.

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In the end, Gronk may not be the same tight end that he was a half-decade ago, but he still has value to offer and he’s proving that on the field.