Rob Gronkowski Named ‘Madden NFL 17’ Cover Athlete

The star tight end is the first New England Patriots player to be selected for the video game

Last Updated: May 12, 2016 @ 5:57 PM

Rob Gronkowski is coming to a living room near you.

The New England Patriots star tight end is already one of the most popular players in the NFL, and on Thursday he was named the “Madden NFL 17” video game cover star.

His new starring role was revealed on ESPN’s SportsCenter at 6 p.m. ET, with Gronkowski telling the show: “It’s a dream come true. When I first found out, I was blessed. It was a surreal moment.”

Gronk was a finalist in the highly anticipated cover decision last year but lost out to New York Giants receiver Odell Beckham Jr.

Heading into his seventh season with the Patriots, Gronkowski is the first player on the team to be picked for the coveted Madden cover spot, following in the footsteps of Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman, Pro Football Hall of Fame running back Barry Sanders, Detroit Lions receiver Calvin Johnson and then-Cleveland Browns running back Peyton Hillis.

Over the last two seasons, Gronkowski has totaled 154 receptions for 2,300 yards and 23 touchdowns — one of them coming in the Patriots’ victory over the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLIX — each followed by his signature ball spike.

Thursday was a big day for the 6-foot-6 football phenomenon after it was revealed that he is also appearing on the cover of GQ‘s June issue.

Gronkowski will no doubt be talking about both epic achievements when appearing on “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” Thursday night — and he’ll have even more to celebrate on Saturday,when he turns 27.

Maybe it’s time for Gronk to plan another party cruise?

“Madden NFL 17” will be released Aug. 23.

(Full disclosure: Rob Gronkowski is a friend. We hang out. I’m happy he’s on the cover.)