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NFL notebook: Gronk says he’s staying retired

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Rob Gronkowski said Sunday that he remains a former New England Patriots tight end.

Ever since he announced his retirement in March, there have been rumors that the three-time Super Bowl champion might change his mind.

“Whatever I say it doesn’t matter. It’ll always be crazy out there. You can put ’em to rest,” he told reporters Sunday. “I’m feeling good. (I’m in) a good place.”

Gronkowski, 30, made the comments at Gillette Stadium, where he was participating in a charity event for children with cancer. The five-time Pro Bowl selection played nine seasons for the Patriots (2010-18), catching 521 passes for 7,861 yards and 79 touchdowns in 115 games.

–Members of the New England Patriots 2018 championship team will receive their Super Bowl rings on Thursday night in a private ceremony hosted by team owner Robert Kraft.

Those attending the ceremony will include some players and staff members who have moved on from New England. Defensive end Trey Flowers, who since signed with the Detroit Lions, and defensive coordinator Brian Flores, now the head coach of the Miami Dolphins, are expected to attend.

The Patriots beat the Los Angeles Rams 13-3 on Feb. 3 in Super Bowl LIII for their sixth title, all since the 2001 season.

–The New York Jets interviewed Philadelphia Eagles vice president of player personnel Joe Douglas for their general manager opening.

Douglas joined the Eagles in May 2016 and helped to build the roster that defeated the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LII on Feb. 4, 2018.

Douglas previously worked with new Jets head coach Adam Gase in Chicago during the 2015 season, with Gase serving as the Bears’ offensive coordinator and Douglas as director of college scouting. The Jets are interviewing candidates to replace Mike Maccagnan, who was fired on May 15 after four seasons in the role.

–Former Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson is open to mending fences with his former team, but only if the team pays him back the portion of the signing bonus he was forced to return when he retired.

“The only way they’re going to get me back is they put that money back in my pocket,” Johnson told the Detroit Free Press on Saturday. “Nah, you don’t do that. I don’t care what they say. They can put it back, then they can have me back. That’s the bottom line.”

Johnson announced his retirement from the league following the 2015 season. The then-30-year-old was still dominant in his final campaign, hauling in 88 passes for 1,214 yards and nine touchdowns and being named to the Pro Bowl for the sixth time. But he was forced to pay back at least $1 million of his signing bonus to the team.

In his career, Johnson totaled 11,619 receiving yards and 83 touchdowns. He played in all 16 of the Lions’ games in 2015 despite battling an ankle injury.

–Field Level Media

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