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Rob Gronkowski favored to win 2020 NFL Comeback Player of the Year

Rob Gronkowski has come out of retirement and joined former teammate Tom Brady on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and oddsmakers believe his return will be a great success.

William Hill Sports Book on Thursday released their odds on who is favored to win the 2020 NFL Comeback Player of the Year Award, and Gronkowski tops the list at 3/1 odds. The player with the next-best odds is Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger — who is coming off shoulder injury that required surgery and limited him to two games in 2019 — at 7/2.

Texans defensive lineman J.J. Watt (6/1), Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford (7/1) and Bengals receiver A.J. Green (8/1) round out the top five.

Gronkowski presents an interesting case on several fronts. First, should he earn Comeback Player of the Year honors, Gronkowski would become only the second player in NFL history to win the award twice, joining quarterback Chad Pennington.

Gronk first won the award in 2014 after he was limited to seven games in 2013 because of knee injuries. The then-Patriots tight end hauled in 82 catches for 1,124 yards and 12 touchdowns in his award-winning season.

Injuries began to hamper Gronkowski’s production again in 2018, the last season in which he played. Appearing in 13 games, a compromised Gronkowski had 47 receptions for 682 yards and only three touchdowns. While those numbers would be welcomed by many tight ends, that output was below Gronkowski’s lofty standards.

It of course remains to be seen whether Gronkowski will be able to knock off the rust after a one-year layoff, get back to his playing weight and return to Pro Bowl form.

While there is no reason to underestimate Gronkowski — who acknowledged the grueling wear-and-tear on his body led to his original retirement — the soon-to-be 31-year-old will be eager to prove any naysayers wrong once NFL teams get back on the field.