I'm sure that, by now, you've all seen the recent video of Rob Gronkowski partying it up - again - shirtless -again - at a Super Bowl After Party - again -this past weekend. On the off chance that you haven't seen it yet, you can take a look here. As a side note...killer dance moves,Gronk. And that was one helluva DDT. Jake the Snake would be proud.
Of course, the media is having an absolute field day with this video, and there are those already telling Gronk to calm it down. The general consensus is that Gronk needs to tone down his behavior and start taking his image into account.
As for me, two questions come to mind here. The first, of course, is "why?" Why should Gronk tone it down? What exactly is he doing wrong? Why should Gronk stop partying? Why should he stop enjoying life and living it on his terms? The bottom line is that Gronkowski is a young, rich, enthusiastic goon who loves to party and has just finished up another grueling NFL season.He is one of the best at his position and a highly recognized public figure. The man simply likes to get loose and make some dumb decisions from time to time. Who among us wouldn't be doing exactly what Gronk is doing if we had the means?
The second question, of course, is "what image?" I feel like the bulk of the sporting world sees Gronk as a fun-loving, goofy meathead who works hard, plays hard, and lives life to the fullest. And his actions this past weekend, in my opinion, reflect that image perfectly. You know that Gronk is going to be having a blast this offseason, and he will be back on the field ready to go come training camp. So what's the big deal?
I think that the media is so quick to jump on Gronk for his antics because his behavior is just so outside of what we have historically seen from members of the New England Patriots. The Pats, particularly under Belichick's tenure, have made a habit laying low in the media, saying little to reporters, and only making headlines for their actions on the field; Gronk, on the other hand, just seems to have a knack for finding himself in the spotlight, and the media has been taking full advantage of that. Gronk's actions are certainly not out of the ordinary for an individual of his age, stature, and mentality, and I for one am glad to see someone taking full advantage of the privileges they are allowed.
Should Gronk be out slamming people with a broken forearm? Probably not. Should he be making sure that he is fully healed and ready to go for the start of the 2013 season? Of course. But should he be out there living the life that a wealthy young athlete at the top of his game should be living? Absolutely he should. And I for one am really, really glad that he is.
If Gronk ever gets arrested or ends up tearing an ACL while throwing four bikini-clad coeds into the pool all at once, then I'll be right there with you telling him to stop acting like an idiot. But until then, I say just let the man have his fun. It's cold, it's dark, and there is no more meaningful football for eight months; I need to live vicariously through somebody. It may as well be him.
In the words of the legendary Wayne Campbell, "Party On."