NFLPA Tells NFL Rookies To Be Like New England Patriots Tight End Rob Gronkowski
When NFL rookies met with the NFLPA at the NFLPA Rookie Premiere this past week at the Beverly Hilton, they probably did not expect to here Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski’s name come up so much.
But throughout the event Gronk’s name was mentioned several times by the President of the NFLPA Ahmad Nassar who made it abundantly clear that Rob Gronkowski is a role model for young players in the league. Nassar made a point that Gronk comes across as a goofy frat boy on purpose and that it is important to establish a brand that is true to yourself.
“Some people think he’s just this extension of a frat boy, and that it’s sort of accidental,” said Ahmad Nassar, president of NFL Players Inc., the for-profit subsidiary of the NFLPA. “And that’s wrong. It’s not accidental, it’s very purposeful. So the message there is, really good branding is where you don’t even feel it. You think, ‘Oh, that’s just Gronk being Gronk.’ Actually, that’s his brand, but it’s so good and so ingrained and so authentic, you don’t even know it’s a brand or think it.”
Financial management is always a big topic of discussion and Nassar brought up Gronk when talking about being careful with your money.
“You should be careful with your money and you should treat your family this way and you should treat your girlfriend or your wife.’ Which is fine. I think that’s valuable,” Nassar said. “But we don’t often give them a chance to answer the question: How do you see yourself as a brand? Because Gronk, Odell, none of those guys accidentally ended up where they are from a branding and marketing standpoint.”
The authenticity of Gronkowski and his brand was also a point of emphasis for Nassar who told the rookies present to be authentic with your fans and avoid doing something just to make a quick dollar.
“When we say, ‘Be like Gronk,’ we mean plan out who you want to be and stay true to that, because brands and fans will sniff it out if you’re not authentic,” Nassar said. “If you’re not authentic it’s not going to resonate well, and people will think that you’re just doing it to make a buck.”