Tom Brady Helps Teammate Get $1 Million Bonus
Tampa Bay Buccaneers star Tom Brady helped his teammate Rob Gronkowski secure a massive payday in the final game of the regular season when he refused to be replaced late in their win over the Carolina Panthers.
By all accounts, Gronkowski, who spent eight years with Brady at the New England Patriots, found himself just shy of the relevant numbers needed to get a hefty bonus, and that's where his illustrious teammate came to the rescue.
The Buccaneers, thanks in no small part to Brady's stellar numbers this season, are in a strong position to make it back to back Super Bowl titles next month, and the NFL computer picks and sportsbook odds have Tampa well placed to make it through the playoffs and into the final stages of the postseason.
Brady leads the NFL stats in passing yards and touchdowns this season, which is no mean feat for a 44-year-old, and the seven-time Super Bowl champion is a decent bet to pick up the NFL MVP award, though Aaron Rodgers may have something to say about that.
Tight-end Gronkowski found himself seven catches and 85 yards, short of a target that would land him an additional $1 million in incentives ahead of the clash with the Panthers, and by the third quarter, a 42-yard reception left him painfully close to those numbers.
Tampa was 14 points up by this stage, but any thoughts of taking Brady off the field of play were quashed by the quarterback. Gronkowski then took a catch that made him $1 million richer as Blaine Gobbert took the field to replace Brady. Up to that point, he had 54 catches but needed that all-important 55th to get his substantial bonus.
Gronkowski was in high spirits when asked about the incentives he had hit, stating;
"It was really nice to get it,"
"Hitting incentives is cool. The Buccaneers are a great organization, putting me in a position where I can hit those incentives, which is awesome. I love playing here. I love playing for this organization. It's cool to hit those."
"I'm going to have to bring out all the tight ends to dinner. A couple of the quarterbacks — I don't bring Tom out; I'll bring the backups out to dinner." Gronkowski joked.
The pair are great friends and experienced a great deal of success at the Patriots before reuniting at the Raymond James Stadium last year after the 32-year-old retired from the game in 2019, a decision he reversed to join Tampa Bay.
Tampa Bay finished the season 13-4 and will take on the Philadelphia Eagles, who they defeated in week six, in the wild-card playoffs on January 16th, where they have home-field advantage and are expected to progress with relative ease.