The New England Patriots have been the best team in the league for years now. However, even their top players often make far less than their market value. Take quarterback Tom Brady for example. He has been taking less than he deserves for practically his entire career. The same can be said for tight end Rob Gronkowski.
However, if we talk about this year, we have to say that these two players were not even close in hitting their contractual incentives. Brady was supposed to be in the top five in passer rating, completion percentage, yards per attempt, touchdown passes, and passing yards. He would have earned $1 million for each of these. On the other hand, Gronk was supposed to have 70 receptions, 80 percent of New England’s offensive snaps, nine touchdowns, 1,085 receiving yards. He would have earned $1.1 million for each passed milestone.
With the regular season finished, we can talk about how Brady and Gronk played this season. Brady finished no higher than seventh in any of the categories he needed to reach the top-five in, while Gronk had only 23 catches, six touchdowns, and 503 yards. However, all is still not lost.
Brady hopes to play for at least five more years, according to recent reports. But this season he struggled with performing good enough to keep the GOAT title. He threw 11 interceptions, the most since 2013. He also had 29 touchdowns, the least since 2013. Because of this, people are asking if age has finally caught up with Brady.
Something similar can be said about Gronk. He is nowhere near the player he was a few years ago. And if Gronkowski wants a new contract once again next season, he will need to step up. Even if he decides to continue playing outside of New Enfland, he might insist on more pay certainty. However, with numbers like his, we really don’t know what he might get.