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Robert Kraft Responds To Rob Gronkowski Trade Rumors

Rob Gronkowski walks off the field after Super Bowl loss to the Patriots.

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - FEBRUARY 04: Rob Gronkowski #87 of the New England Patriots walks off the field after his teams 41-33 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles in Super Bowl LII at U.S. Bank Stadium on February 4, 2018 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Philadelphia Eagles defeated the New England Patriots 41-33. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Rob Gronkowski has had a busy few days. The Patriots just wrapped up OTAs a few days early, after last week's minicamp.

Over the weekend, Gronk was on Long Island to watch his namesake horse, of which he is a shareholder, race in the Belmont Stakes. After an incredibly slow start, Gronkowski the horse went from last place to second, finishing just behind Triple Crown-winner Justify.

Video of Gronkowski the human watching the race went viral right after it wrapped up. He had a camera on him the whole time, and went through the full range of emotions during the race, as his horse made its bid for a historic upset.

The day before the big race, Rob Gronkowski was the subject of some jarring trade rumors.

Things started with the bizarre story of the Redditor who broke the Julian Edelman suspension before it was reported on by national media. He teased another "major" Patriots story that was supposed to come.

On Friday afternoon, Barstool Sports founder and Patriots superfan Dave Portnoy tweeted that he was "hearing" that Gronkowski could be on the trading block. Gronk is one of the best tight ends to ever play, but given his flirtation with an early retirement, and Bill Belichick's tendency to cut bait early on players rather than late, it seemed at least a bit plausible.

Rob Gronkowski's brother Chris quickly called the rumor "fake news." NBC Sports Boston's Tom E. Curran also quickly shot it down.

A few hours later, however, local Patriots writer Adam Kurkjian restoked the flames. He tweeted a pretty wild report involving potential trades to the 49ers and Titans, which owner Robert Kraft supposedly nixed after Tom Brady threatened to retire. Patriots PR quickly responded, saying that "none of it" was true.

Now, Kraft has responded to that specific rumor himself. He was pretty clear in shooting down the story.

Kraft's full quote, via The Boston Globe:

“I guess when your team is good, people are looking for things, and I’ll just tell you it’s a bunch of hogwash that I vetoed some trade,’’ Kraft told reporters. “That was never in the works; it’s just completely made up.

“And I think we have to be careful in society today — people can’t just come out and say things. And this bit about us trading Gronk to the 49ers or Tennessee . . . there’s no basis to it and it gets a life of its own.

“I just wanted to go on record at today’s event to make sure that you all understand that there’s no truth to that.’’

If there was anything to the Gronk trade story, it is probably dead now, with how forcefully the Patriots have gone on the record to deny it.

[The Boston Globe]