Rob Gronkowski joked about Tom Brady’s NFL complaints: ‘It was already flag football for you’

Morning Sports Update

Brady questioned the current physicality in the NFL, asking if “football goes to flag football over a period of time.”

Tom Brady Rob Gronkowski
Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski before Super Bowl LIII tan Grossfeld /Globe Staff

Rob Gronkowski’s reaction to Tom Brady’s comments: After Tom Brady recently posited that the NFL is becoming a less physical league with too many penalties, former teammate Rob Gronkowski couldn’t resist making the obvious joke.

Brady, speaking in an episode of his “Let’s Go!” podcast, sarcastically joked, “Maybe football goes to flag football over a period of time.”

“This is football. This isn’t touch football,” he added. “This is real football, and I think the physicality — which people really enjoy — I certainly enjoyed. I love the physical element of the sport. I don’t think we should ever lose that. There are so many people that want it less and less physical, it’s more like flag football, which is going to be in the Olympics in 2028.”

Gronkowski, who played alongside Brady and won Super Bowls with the legendary quarterback with both the Patriots and Buccaneers, noted that there is a level of hypocrisy in a quarterback complaining about any lack of physicality in the NFL.

“You’re a quarterback. I mean, it was already flag football for you, brother,” Gronkowski humorously said of Brady during the “Up & Adams Show.” “Some of those calls for you your last year, they barely touched you.”

“All the rules go in your favor, Tom.”

Gronkowski, conversely, faced a much more physical challenge in his NFL career as a tight end. Still, despite the heavy toll it took on him, the four-time Super Bowl champion largely agrees with Brady’s overall take.

“The NFL is just getting too soft now,” Gronkowski said, noting his opposition to a newly proposed rule that would outlaw the hip-drop tackle. “I think it should still be allowed. You really don’t see it and if you’re in that position, you got to do what you got to do to take someone down.”

Scores and schedule:

Tonight, the Bruins face the Sharks in San Jose at 10:30 p.m.

Also tonight, the Celtics play the Hornets in Charlotte in a preseason matchup at 7 p.m.

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