UPDATE: Gronk was suspended for one game.
Rob Gronkowski should be hearing from the NFL league office soon. On Sunday, the Patriots tight end ignited a raging controversy when he delivered a cheap shot to the back of Tre'Davious White's head. The Bills corner had to leave the game and was later diagnosed with a concussion. Gronk was flagged after the play, but further punishment is almost sure to come.
The perpetual frat boy knew that and went into damage control after the game, telling reporters that he regretted the hit. "I don't believe in shots like that," Gronkowski said. "I'm not in the business of that. It was a lot of frustration. At that moment, it happened naturally through emotions and frustration."
The hit came after White had just picked off Tom Brady and Gronk, who thought pass interference should have been called on the play. He explained that a series of bad calls set him off. "It was a couple times in the game, and they're calling me for the craziest stuff ever," he said. "And it's crazy, like, what am I supposed to do? And then they don't call that? It was just frustration, and that's what happened."
The Bills weren't ready to hear Gronk's excuses after the game. "That's a dirty play, man," Bills safety Micah Hyde said. "That's not cool. It's amazing to me that you don't get ejected for something like that. It's crazy."
Another of Gronk's critics after the game? His own head coach Bill Belichick, who was caught telling Bills head coach Sean McDermott that the hit was "bullshit."
The reaction to Gronk's hit on social media was predictably over-heated, with some declaring it the worst they've ever seen.
You may not be ready to issue that judgement about Gronk's hit, but you can decide if it was the dirtiest play of this season. Here are some other contenders for that title.
For reference, the players above were all either fined or suspended for their transgressions. Expect Gronk join them soon.