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Rob Gronkowski reveals impact of Tom Brady’s advancing age

Tom Brady will celebrate his 41st birthday on Friday, and the veteran signal-caller’s advancing age may be having its consequences, so says Rob Gronkowski.

Gronk insists Brady getting a bit longer in the tooth has had no impact on his talent, overall intensity or approach. Instead, Brady is aging like fine wine. Although it does appear getting up there in years is manifesting itself in other ways.

He’s nicer to younger players.

“I’ve seen the same fire since I’ve been here. I would say probably back in the day he was a little more on you if you didn’t get it right. A little more in your face,” Gronkowski told reporters Friday, via the Boston Herald. “But I don’t see . . . he’s going on 41 now. I feel like he’s backed off on that a little bit which is nice. He used to be mean to me. Now he’s not to these young guys anymore.”

When asked exactly how Brady was mean, Gronk said: “He just was.”

So, Brady is mellowing with age? Interesting.

Gronkowski nevertheless still marvels by what Brady can do at his age, saying, “It’s just unbelievable and something to look up to.”

Regarding Brady’s birthday, Gronk is apparently under a gag order regarding any potential presents.

“Yeah, it’s a secret,” Gronk said. “I do kinda want to say, but I can’t . . . we would all get in trouble.”

Interestingly, even the curmudgeonly Bill Belichick could not help but crack a joke about Brady’s birthday present.

Although to hear it from Gronk, the ideal gift for Brady is simply letting him get out on the field.

“Tell you the truth,” Gronkowski said, “he loves the game of football so much, usually on his birthday, he just wants a good practice.”

A recent report suggested Brady could conceivably contemplate retirement should the Patriots hoist another Lombardi Trophy following Super Bowl LIII. From the sound of it, Brady, the NFL’s reigning MVP, has plenty left in the tank. He’s just … a bit more mellow is all.