Morning sports update: NFL commentator sees a ‘100 percent’ chance of a Rob Gronkowski comeback

"I'm road-mapping it for you folks, the way this is going to work."

Rob Gronkowski
Rob Gronkowski at the ESPY Awards. – (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)

The Red Sox beat the Blue Jays 5-4 on Wednesday night as Rafael Devers homered yet again. Boston’s final game in the Toronto series starts at 1:05 p.m.

And the Revolution dominated the Whitecaps 4-0 at Gillette Stadium, with new signing Gustavo Bou scoring an emphatic volley in his debut:

Rich Eisen explained exactly how he thinks Rob Gronkowski’s comeback will happen: After retired Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski told NFL Network host Rich Eisen earlier in July that “I can’t really say how I’m going to feel about it when the games start rolling around,” the speculation of a possible comeback has only increased.


On Wednesday, Eisen continued with his prediction of a Gronkowski return. It would start with Gronkowski appearing at the team’s banner-raising ceremony on opening night, he said.

“Gronk will be there in civilian clothes,” Eisen began, “and he’ll look around, and he’ll see the fireworks going off, and he’ll feel really good. He’s gone through the offseason workout of his own, he’ll feel really good, and then he’ll look around and go, ‘Why the hell am I not doing this right now?'”

Eventually, Eisen said, Tom Brady will call Gronkowski during the season to ask him about coming back.

“This is going to happen,” he said. “Somebody in the information business is going to find out the point by which he has to inform New England that he’s coming back because paperwork needs to be filed, and removal from retirement list has to officially be done, and then there’s going to have to be some form of being on a roster by a certain point in order to be able to play in a certain game. That information is going to come out. I don’t know if it’s going to be Ian [Rapoport] or [Adam] Schefter, name it, or [Mike] Florio, somebody’s going to report that. And it’s just going to spark up all sorts of questions.”


“I’m road-mapping it for you folks, the way this is going to work,” Eisen predicted.

When asked what percentage chance he gives for a Gronkowski comeback, Eisen was unequivocal.

“One hundred percent. Have I stuttered in the last month at all?”

Trivia: Gronkowski is first among Patriots tight ends in all-time receiving yards, and Ben Coates is second. Both are synonymous with the position in New England. But who is third on the list?

(Answer at the bottom).

Hint: Like Gronkowski, he retired earlier than many expected (but eventually came out of retirement when he was traded and won a Super Bowl with his new team).

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Julian Edelman is aware of the rapidly approaching start of Patriots training camp:

Wednesday’s storm caused the power to flicker at Gillette Stadium before the Revolution game:

On this day: In 1976 at the Montreal Summer Olympics, 14-year-old Romanian gymnast Nadia Comaneci scored the first perfect 10.0 in history with a flawless routine on the uneven bars. She would achieve six additional perfect 10 scores on her way to winning three gold medals.

And in 1999, Scottish golfer Paul Lawrie completed the biggest final round comeback in the history of major championships. He rallied from 10 strokes behind to defeat Jean Van de Velde and Justin Leonard in a playoff to win the 128th Open Championship at Carnoustie.

The moment is also remembered for Van de Velde’s collapse on the 18th hole. Leading by three strokes and seemingly assured of victory, he arrived on what appeared to be the final hurdle having birdied on 18 in his two previous rounds.

Yet a series of errors led to catastrophe. A triple bogey led to a playoff, and Lawrie seized his chance for victory. Here’s Van de Velde talking about the moment in 2018:

Daily highlight: Red Sox outfielder Jackie Bradley Jr. caught Justin Smoak trying to stretch his single into a double.

Trivia answer: Russ Francis