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Buccaneers embrace Gronkowski's hard work and personality

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Posted at 4:40 PM, Jan 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-08 18:49:59-05

TAMPA - — Last week, Bucs quarterback Tom Brady shared his favorite off-the-field memory of Rob Gronkowski. It took place during a GQ photoshoot. This week, Gronkowski had the chance to share his favorite Brady story.

"Going to a Kentucky Derby and seeing him take a shot. Just seeing his face after, in disgust," Gronkowski laughed. "'I’m putting this alcohol in my body! How am I going to throw next week?!''

Gronk's outgoing, funny personality is contagious, and it's rubbing off on his teammates and coaches.

"Old Gronkitis, that’s what we call him. Gronkitis, haha!" said Bucs offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich. "He has fun. He loves the game of football. The work that he puts in is real. It’s serious. It’s just amazing the way he sees the world."

Bucs offensive lineman Ali Marpet is a soft-spoken guy, but he couldn't help but laugh when describing Gronk's personality.

"Just an enthusiastic, energetic guy that gets other guys to play better," Marpet said. "Brings an energy that sort of raises everyone else’s intensity. He’s a great guy to have around."

This year, Gronkowski played a full regular season for the first time since 2011. Now he says he's ready for a full postseason.

"That was my goal. Just to go out there and be reliable, week in, week out," the 31-year-old said. "Be consistent week in, week out. Now bring that to the playoffs, and bring it to another level."

The Bucs and Washington kick off at FedEx Field in Landover, MD tomorrow night at 8:15 p.m.