There’s lots of news around the NFL this week, with the start of training camp just over a month away. Although not all of it’s good,
Gronk Announces Retirement (Again)
Future Hall-of-Fame tight end Rob Gronkowski has retired from the NFL for the second time. He had been quiet about his future this offseason until making his announcement on Instagram. He leaves the game after 11 seasons and four Super Bowl titles with the New England Patriots and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
He first retired before the 2019 season and, after a year off, later joined the Buccaneers and Tom Brady in Tampa, where he had 45 receptions for 623 yards and seven touchdowns. He then caught two touchdown passes in their Super Bowl victory over the Kansas City Chiefs. The Buccaneers selected two tight ends in the recent draft as insurance if he didn’t return for 2022.
Many wonder if he is gone for good or if he may be coaxed out of retirement a second time. Gronkowski’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, said after the announcement that he wouldn’t be surprised if he got a call from Brady and made another return this season. Most fans are hoping for the same.
Watson Settles Lawsuit With Accusers
Cleveland Browns’ quarterback Deshaun Watson has reached settlements with 20 of the 24 women who filed civil lawsuits alleging he was guilty of sexual misconduct during massage sessions. His lawyer, Tony Buzbee, announced Tuesday that all but four of the civil cases filed had been settled. No terms of any of the settlements have been released.
Watson is one of the NFL’s most talented players at quarterback and joined the Cleveland Browns after missing all of last season following the allegations surfacing. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced last month that the investigation into the accusations was almost complete.
The league also said the recent settlements would have no bearing on the disciplinary action it plans to take against Watson. However, insiders feel a season-long suspension could be coming. That will make the Browns’ decision to buy him more costly.
Washington Commanders Owner In Trouble
Despite being requested, Daniel Snyder, owner of the Washington Commanders, did not testify before the US House of Representatives Oversight Committee on Wednesday. He will now be legally compelled by Representative Carolyn B. Maloney, the committee chairwoman. She announced Wednesday that she would issue a subpoena to Snyder for testimony at a second deposition next week.
Maloney stated that Snyder’s refusal not to testify is a clear sign that he cares more about protecting himself than about revealing the truth to the American people. “If the NFL is unwilling to hold Mr. Snyder accountable, then I am prepared to do so. The Committee will not be deterred in its investigation to uncover the truth of workplace misconduct at the Washington Commanders,” she stated.
Goodell repeatedly refuted Maloney’s assertion that Snyder was not held responsible for Washington’s workplace environment. He argued that the NFL imposed “unprecedented” discipline on the Commanders for the behavior. Snyder had not attended league meetings since the NFL wrapped its investigation into misconduct within the organization. He also stated that Snyder was not involved in the day-to-day operations of his own team.
Ravens LB Jaylen Ferguson Dies at Age 26
The Baltimore Ravens announced on Wednesday morning that fourth-year linebacker Jaylen Ferguson has died. The third-round draft pick by the team in the 2019 draft from Louisiana Tech led the NCAA in sacks in 2018 with 17.5. The 26-year-old was expected to have a breakout season this year and play a major role in the Ravens’ defense.
The team said in their statement, “We are profoundly saddened by the passing of Jaylon Ferguson. He was a kind, respectful young man with a big smile and infectious personality. We express our heartfelt condolences to Jaylon’s family and friends as we mourn a life lost much too soon.”
On Tuesday night, Baltimore Police responded to a call on Ilchester Avenue around 11:30 PM regarding a questionable death and later confirmed the victim was Ferguson. The incident is still under investigation until the Medical Examiner’s office determines what caused his death.