Rob Gronkowski was almost traded to the Lions during the offseason. And as ESPN reporter Adam Schefter explained on Monday morning, the terms of the deal was where the negotiations broke down.
“It would have been a trade involving draft picks,” Schefter said on WEEI’s “Kirk & Callahan” during an interview. “That was the basic trade. He was the only player involved in that trade. … It would have been a combination of picks and it didn’t work out for either side and in the end, the Patriots got to keep him.”
According to Schefter, Gronkowski became unwilling to accept a deal anywhere, even situations potentially more favorable than Detroit.
“Basically, the deal was all but agreed to,” said Schefter. “He was going to go there and I think when he found out that he was going there he [called the Patriots] said he didn’t want to go and needed to sit down and talk things through. He was able to state what he wanted going forward. They were able to state what they wanted going forward and the two sides were able to resolve it to where the deal wouldn’t have gone through because he didn’t want to go there. It wasn’t that he didn’t want to go to Detroit, he didn’t want to go anywhere. They could have traded him to the Rams, the Niners, the Titans, you pick the team, it doesn’t really matter. He wasn’t going to go.”
Interestingly, another former Patriots player was also connected to the Gronkowski trade conversations.
“Now, there were conversations going on with a few other teams, I believe the Titans were one,” Schefter noted. “I don’t know the full list of teams, but I know the Lions and the Patriots basically had the framework of a deal done and Gronk would have gone there, but he didn’t want to go anywhere. He didn’t want to leave. Tom Brady, he didn’t want to leave New England, he didn’t want to leave the organization. When the two sides got together the week of the draft, you’ll remember that meeting a couple of days before the draft, that put to bed any notion that he was going to be moving on, and in this particular case it would have been to Detroit.”
Here’s the audio:
— Kirk & Callahan (@KirkAndCallahan) September 24, 2018