This was part of a Packman Breaks FULL, 10-Box, Case Break of the brand new, and beautiful, 2022 Panini Honors Football. Each Hobby Box of 2022 Honors Football contains 1 Buyback Autograph along with 1 other Autograph, 1 Base, and a Base Parallel, on average of course. This encased beauty was an Impeccable Gronk Auto numbered 6 out of 10. It was a Random Team Break, and to the surprise of all in the Break, it was Gronk on the Patriots, clearly part of Honors’ Auto Buyback program. Gronk always brings the party with him, and this throwback hit certainly reminded us of his glory days back in New England.
Rob Gronkowski, better kown as “Gronk”, played 9 seasons for the New England Patriots, then played his final 2 seasons in Tampa Bay with the Bucs. During his time in the league, he revolutionized the position of Tight End.
After a decorated high school career in all sports, and between 2 high schools where he grew up in upstate New York and Pittsburgh, Gronk ended up attending the University of Arizona.
As a Pre-Business major, he played for the Arizona Wildcats football team from 2007 to 2009 under head coach Mike Stoops.
When he was a freshman in 2007, he recorded 28 receptions for 525 yards and 6 touchdowns. His 18.8 yards per reception average was the best on the team and his receiving yards were a school record for a tight end. He was named The Sporting News freshman All-American, Rivals.com freshman All-American, The Sporting News freshman Pac-10, and All-Pac-10 honorable mention player.
He missed the first 3 games of the 2008 college football season, but later recorded 47 receptions for 672 yards and a team-best 10 touchdowns.
He was twice named the John Mackey National Tight End of the Week, and was named an Associated Press third-team All-American and All-Pac-10 first-team tight end. Gronkowski would go on to set the school records for a tight end for single-game, single-season, and career receptions, yards, and touchdowns.
Prior to the 2009 season, Gronk was placed on the watchlist for the Lombardi Award….until he missed that entire season due to back surgery, which caused his draft stock to fall. Nonetheless, he was drafted by the New England Patriots in the 2nd round with the 42nd overall pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, making him the highest drafted tight end out of Arizona (breaking the mark set by Brandon Manumaleuna in 2001).
He signed a 4-year contract on July 25, 2010 worth $4.4 million, with a $1.76 million signing bonus, and was off and running!
The rest is NFL history, literally, Gronk retired, again, with the 3rd-most receiving touchdowns EVER by a tight end (with 92), went to 5 Super Bowls (winning 4 of them), a 5-time Pro Bowler and a 4-time First-Team All-Pro selection.
Gronks’ days with a ball in his hands may be over, but we have a feeling his days with a microphone in his hands has just begun….