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Gronkowski embraces the role of a "Buffalo Guy"

PHOENIX -- Rob Gronkowski didn't read from the erotic novel, "A Gronking To Remember," as he did at Media Day on Tuesday. But the Patriots' tight end was his usual freewheeling self during his one-hour interview session Wednesday morning at the Sheraton Wild Horse Pass hotel in Chandler.

The Amherst native talked about a variety of subjects, including his affection for Buffalo and kittens, his recovery from off-season knee surgery, his family, his fondness for the college life, his respect for the Seattle Seahawks' defense and yes, Lacey Noonan's  erotic literature. A few highlights:

On how it feels to be healthy, unlike his previous Super Bowl appearance against the Giants: "It's a million times better being healthy and not having to answer questions about my ankle every four seconds. It's cool. I can just focus on the Seahawks and their defense and be able to practice fully."

On whether he considers himself a Buffalo Guy: "Yeah, no doubt. I grew up in Buffalo. I believe that's where my hard work and dedication definitely comes from, growing up in Buffalo. They're hard workers there, hard-working scholars up in Buffalo ... I definitely feel it in snow. When I'm in New England, everyone's like, 'Are you ready for the snow? I say, 'Yeah, this is nothing, buddy. I grew up in Buffalo. The snow is nothing."

On being the erotic subject of a novel that's being sold on Amazon: “It’s cool. You can laugh about it, but at the same time you can’t really get caught up in it because you’re here for a job and it’s to win football games. Being on this team, being with the head coach here and the quarterback we have keeps you humble. It keeps you hard working. "

On whether there's a little college kid still in him: “I mean, there’s a college kid left in everyone. I bet you would go back for a night or two if you could, so why not? My brother’s still in college, my little brother, so it’s always good to go back and get a little glimpse of it and to hang out with him for a weekend or two.”

On being photographed with kittens for ESPN The Magazine: "I know they always make it look good, so I really didn’t mind it. It was all good. Kittens are cool.”

On the importance of this Super Bowl to the legacies of the Pats and Tom Brady: "This game's huge, no doubt. It leaves a legacy for the organization, for Tom Brady. It leaves a legacy for myself, and for everyone single player, every
single person involved in this organization. That's why this is a such a huge game."

On how long it took him to feel like himself  this season:

"When I felt like it? I said it many times. It was Week 5 going into the Cincinnati game. I felt like I got a routine
down throughout the first four weeks where I could practice hard, maintain my health, get my knee so it didn't swell up on me. I found a routine after a few weeks that would keep me for the whole year. It clicked. The Cincinnati game, I went out there, played the most snaps I have all year and took it from there."

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