ATLANTA (Reuters) - New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski called Sunday’s Super Bowl win over the Los Angeles Rams the sweetest of his three championships but said he would need more time to decide whether it was his last game.
Gronkowski made one of the biggest plays of the game, a 29-yard diving catch in the fourth quarter that put the ball on the Ram’s two-yard line that set up the game’s only touchdown and the Rams never threatened again as they fell 13-3.
The catch sent Patriots fans in Atlanta into a frenzy and the big receiver, known as ‘Gronk,’ said the win was the highlight of his career.
“The way we won just puts it at the top,” he said. “We won as a football team and that’s what it’s all about.”
Gronkowski said he needs more time to make a decision about his future after a wildly successful but injury-riddled career.
“You know, I haven’t thought about that decision at all,” he said in an on-field interview after the game.
“Tonight’s the night to celebrate with my team and in the future, that will ... you know, that will be decided in a few weeks or so.”
With speculation surrounding whether veteran Patriots quarterback Tom Brady might now retire — and he insists he will not — the 29-year-old Gronkowski could conceivably be the first key piece of the Patriots dynasty to call it a career.
Gronkowski has suffered a series of knee and back injuries since joining the league in 2010, which kept him out of the 2013 and 2016 postseasons.
For now, he said he was looking forward to celebrating the victory in New England next week.
“Pats’ Nation always sticks by us no matter what the situation is,” he said.
“We love you guys, we’re bringing home the championship.”
His teammates praised his ability to come up with key plays on the game’s biggest stages despite being written off as past his prime.
“I mean, Gronk, man, this is just two games in a row where he has made plays on the last drives to give us a chance to score, to win,” said Patriots defensive back Duron Harmon.
“He’s done it, and everybody’s at a point where they’re kind of writing him off, saying he’s going to retire.
“These last two games, he’s made big plays when we needed him the most.”
Editing by Greg Stutchbury