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Brady, Gronkowski attend start of Patriots minicamp

By The Sports Xchange
Brady, Gronkowski attend start of Patriots minicamp
New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady signals to his supporters before the Super Bowl LII at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis on February 4. Photo by Kamil Krzaczynski/UPI | License Photo

Quarterback Tom Brady and tight end Rob Gronkowski were in attendance on Tuesday for the start of the New England Patriots' mandatory three-day minicamp at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Mass.

Both players elected against taking part in the team's voluntary workouts, leading to reports that they were not on good terms with coach Bill Belichick.

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Belichick dismissed that notion during Tuesday's media session, saying that he was happy to have all the players in attendance.

"I've always had a good relationship with Tom," the 66-year-old Belichick said.

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Belichick was later asked if he had any concerns about the players being "all in" for the 2018 season.

"(It's) always been that way ever since they've been on the team," Belichick said.

Multiple media outlets have reported that both Brady and Gronkowski are seeking new contracts ahead of the 2018 regular season. Brady has two years remaining on his current deal and is scheduled to earn a base salary of $14 million in 2018, while Gronkowski also has two years remaining on his current contact -- which pays a base salary of $8 million.

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Brady committed to play the 2018 season during an appearance April 30 at the Milken Institute Global Conference in Santa Monica, Calif. The three-time NFL Most Valuable Player said at that conference that he desired to spend more time with his family this offseason while still preparing for the 2018 season.

Brady threw for a league-best 4,577 yards along with 32 touchdowns and only eight interceptions last season.

Gronkowski initially raised doubts about his playing future mere moments after Super Bowl LII, with rumors circulating of a career in acting, professional wrestling and even dirt-bike riding for the affable star.

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He posted 69 catches for 1,084 yards with eight touchdowns over 14 games in 2017.

A second-round draft pick of the Patriots in 2010, Gronkowski has been a touchdown machine since joining the team, reaching double digits in five of his eight seasons, including a career-high 17 in 2011.

Gronkowski has surpassed 1,000 yards four times and has 474 receptions for 7,179 yards in 102 career games (89) starts.

His 76 touchdown catches rank third on the all-time list among tight ends, behind Antonio Gates (114) and Tony Gonzalez (111).

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