Rob Gronkowski, like many former teammates, has been hesitant speak publicly about Aaron Hernandez who was his former New England Patriots teammate who was convicted of murder in 2015.
In an interview on the “10 Questions with Kyle Brandt” podcast, Gronkowski finally opened up about his experience with Hernandez.
“Aaron was a great player,” Gronkowski said. “He was a great football player. But … I get questions like that all the time, about him and everything. And, with everything going on, I was definitely shook when I heard that.”
Hernandez was arrested for the murder of semi-pro football player Odin Lloyd in June 2013, just a year after he had signed a five-year contract extension with the Patriots.
New England soon released him and Bill Belichick reportedly banned the team from using his name in the locker room.
“Being a teammate and everything … you really don’t see that,” Gronkowski said. “You’re not really looking into players like that’s who they are, or that’s what they’re doing. You know, just overall I just try to keep it simple and light. He was a great football player, but that doesn’t mean anything.”
Hernandez was found dead in his prison cell on April 19, 2017. The death was ruled a suicide.