Rob Gronkowski Agrees With Conspiracy Theory that NFL is Targeting Him with OPI Calls


Rob Gronkowski has been called for accepted offensive pass interference (OPI) penalties on five occasions this year. Yesterday, the Boston Herald’s Jeff Howe went on the Toucher & Rich Show and espoused a theory that the NFL was specifically targeting Gronkowski on the OPI calls.

Today, Gronkowski tweeted an article talking about that, with the simple statement, “agree.”

Here’s what Howe said, according to 98.5’s article, when talking about whether there was a conspiracy against Gronkowski:

"“There is no question about that. There is not even a debate, especially after that fourth quarter OPI called on Sunday. That closed the book on that debate; they are going after Rob Gronkowski,” said Howe. “He didn’t even initiate the contact and was penalized on that play. That was the worst penalty, up there with the Malcolm Butler PI [against the Giants]. Those are the two worst penalties I’ve seen called  this season against the Patriots.”"

No question about it. The Patriots fans are the most persecuted people on the planet. SI is also trolling them with a missed holding call on the cover featuring Brock Osweiler from this week. Officials normally don’t miss those.

FWIW,  a review of the OPI’s called on Gronkowski show three obvious ones (two big pushoffs and one where he was engaged blocking downfield on a pass) and one questionable one from previous games, the first in the Jacksonville game where he did initiate contact but it was away from the ball.

Gronkowski is a big, physical guy. He likes to create space. Like Shaq in the NBA, he is often going against guys smaller than him. Maybe there’s some size bias, where a small receiver wouldn’t draw the same attention, or effect, by pushing off.

Here’s the compilation of the accepted OPIs against Gronk this year, put together by Michael Shamburger. You decide.