Behind The Scenes

‘Gronktastic’ ways to expand your vocabulary, courtesy of The Herd

Since you’re reading FrontRow.com, you wanted some “Gronkformation” about ESPN.

That’s what folks at ESPN Radio’s The Herd with Colin Cowherd would say as they attempt to use Super Bowl week’s most popular new term in a variety of ways.

New England Patriots 6-foot-6, 265-pound tight end Rob Gronkowski has been the center of attention in Indianapolis.

His left ankle injury has attracted so much media focus that — as ESPN.com’s Ashley Fox notes — New York Giants defensive end Dave Tollefson suggested it get its own Twitter account: @Gronksankle.

The Herd producer Vince Kates, in Indy for Super Bowl XLVI, noticed the mania for all things Gronk.

“The term ‘Gronk’ has been thrown around so much this week — and it just came out of where — so we decided on some different uses for it,” Kates says.

That led to a bit during Wednesday’s Herd (10 a.m.-1 p.m. ET M-F, ESPN Radio, ESPNews) that probably had Noah Webster rolling over in his grave.

Host Cowherd would present a definition and Jim Cutler, the invaluable show contributor Kates calls “our voice guy,” would announce the word as only he can.

Colin would say, “You’re about to go out with your wife, and she looks smoking hot, she would look. . .”

“Gronkolicious,” Cutler would finish.

Another example: “You and the boys and going out and go clubbing a little bit, you’d say. .. ”

“Let’s get Gronked.”

“We send liners to Jim every morning for in-show teases, and Wednesday we sent him a bit of a curveball with some funny stuff,” Kates says.

“He’s always a good sport and knocks them out for us. The last time he did something for us like this, it was our new names for a Los Angeles NFL team — we had names like the LA Entourage, the LA Quakes, and the LA Blow.”

Cowherd says: “I like doing this kind of thing, especially in a week where we’ve got one main story to deal with. Finding the little things and getting the most out of them is what we like doing in The Herd.”

Gronkowski visited ESPN in August with his fellow NFL veteran brothers Chris and Dan for a Bristol Car Wash. Check out this Front Row piece and their ad libbed photo.

Gronkowski’s oddball personality and record-setting season as a high-scoring Tom Brady target has spawned all sorts of tributes.

Check out the myriad of impressions his Patriots teammates offered on Media Day in the video below.

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