-- FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski, who is returning from back surgery that cut short his 2016 season after just eight games, told the Boston Herald that he has made a full-fledged commitment to work with Tom Brady's TB12 Sports Therapy Center.
Gronkowski has done so in the past, but the difference this year is his 100 percent commitment level, according to those close to him.
"Just looking at Tom, seeing what he does every day, what he eats, talking to him personally one-on-one, just learning about the body with him, just seeing how flexible he is, how pliable he is, how loose he is all the time, every day and ready to go, I just felt like it was the time in my career where I needed to devote myself at all levels," Gronkowski told the Herald.
Gronkowski, 28, told the Herald the work at the center, which is located at Patriot Place adjacent to Gillette Stadium, is an addition to his regular work with the team's strength coaches.
"I definitely feel like a brand-new guy just being able to do exercises here ... that help stabilize your core ... I feel looser. I feel my mobility has increased a lot. I feel way more pliable," he told the newspaper.
"With the past I've had, you worry about [the future]. I wanted to find a way to fix that. I wanted to find a way to make me feel good all the time and not worry. Coming here has definitely put me in that right direction."
Part of Gronkowski's work includes nutrition, which is well documented with Brady, who eats avocado ice cream and generally avoids alcohol. Gronkowski joked with the Herald that he isn't taking things that far, but he might give it a try if Brady gets involved.
"Tom's my chef," Gronkowski cracked to the Herald. "I told him I'm only eating them if you have them ready for me. And he said, 'Deal.'"