Sources: 'Chances increasing' that the Patriots could trade Rob Gronkowski this offseason

Super Bowl LII - Philadelphia Eagles v New England Patriots

The latest revelation surrounding the uncertain future of Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski suggests the hierarchy in New England could be willing to part ways with the five-time All Pro. 

'Gronk' was surprisingly noncommittal when talking about his future in the NFL after the Super Bowl and it now seems like the Patriots could take the decision out of his hands to an extent. 

The 28-year-old's career has been constantly disrupted by injuries and it's thought he could seek a move into the entertainment industry at some point soon. 

It's been nearly two months since he said he would "look at [his] future" and there is still no official word on his status for 2018.

Now, it is emerging via Greg Bedard of the Boston Sports Journal and an unnamed 'Bill Belichick-friendly source' that the Patriots could be looking to trade the long time cornerstone of their receiving game:

“A Bill Belichick-friendly source agreed with my thinking that once a player makes Belichick start to contemplate life without him, Belichick starts to warm to being without that player. “He imagines you gone,” he said. The longer Gronkowski goes without saying he’s all in, the chances of him being traded increases, the source said.

Bedard noted that Belichick has always been inclined to move on from players when they give him a reason to question their commitment, no matter who they are. 

Jamie Collins and Chandler Jones are two recent examples of high profile players that the Pats have traded for off field reasons and it would be far from shocking should Gronkowski find himself playing elsewhere in 2018. 

Bedard also identified two potential trading partners for New England; the Rams and 49ers. 

Fox Sports' radio host Colin Cowherd also made the case for the Rams and it's certainly a convincing one. 

As for the niners, they have the cap space to take on the five-time Pro Bowler, a need at the position and it would be an attractive fit considering former Pats QB Jimmy Garoppolo is now there. 

Gronk and Jimmy G in Kyle Shanahan's explosive offense is a scary though for the rest of the league.

Given his less than perfect health though, the Patriots would be lucky to get a first round pick from any team for Gronkowski, though Belichick has settled for less in the past. 

Whatever happens in this instance, the situation will be worth keeping an eye on as the draft nears.

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