By Bernd Buchmasser
The upcoming game between the New England Patriots and the Kansas City Chiefs offers plenty of intrigue. One of the most talked about battles is one that does not even take place simultaneously: the one between tight ends Rob Gronkowski and Travis Kelce. The two Pro Bowlers are arguably the two best players in the NFL at their position – but there is little doubt about who is number one, at least when you ask Rob Ninkovich.
The former Patriots defender, who retired last offseason, recently joined XTRA 1360 in San Diego to talk about Gronkowski and Kelce. For Ninkovich, however, it isn’t much of a debate about who is the better tight end between the two: “I would take Gronk,” the two-time world champion told hosts Nick Hardwick and Judson Richards. “I’ve played against Kelce, and I’ve thrown him around like he’s a little doll.”
Ninkovich continued criticizing Kelce’s abilities as a blocker: “The guy doesn’t want to block. When you’re a tight end and you don’t want to block, you’re not really a tight end.” But despite the alleged deficiencies when it comes to blocking – and those allegations have some merit –, Kelce has been a productive player. Last regular season alone, he caught 83 passes for 1,038 and eight...