Friday, February 15, 2013
Chances of a Gonzalez return
By Tim Kavanagh
After losing in their only postseason appearance in 2011, the Atlanta Falcons took another step in 2012, making it to the NFC championship game but losing to the San Francisco 49ers. In order to take their next step in 2013, they'd like to return as many members of their dominant offense as possible, though as we know, this isn't always easy. One of the big question marks is next to Tony Gonzalez's name.
Gonzalez does not have a contract for 2013, but unlike many other impending free agents, he's also considering retirement. It's thought that if Gonzalez continues his NFL career, it will be with the Falcons. During an appearance on "Pro Football Talk" on the NBC Sports Network, Falcons GM Thomas Dimitroff offered up his analysis of the situation.
"Tony has done so much for us on and off the field and I don't believe, not stating that he would be lying to anyone, but I don't believe the 95 percent," Dimitroff opined, regarding Gonzalez's previous comments that he was 95 percent certain he was going to retire. "I want to believe it's a lot closer to 50/50, to be honest with you, and we've had discussions. Obviously Mike Smith has had discussions with him. We're all in a good place. Ultimately it's up to Tony to decide if he wants to come back and potentially catch 100 balls again. I think it's one of those situations that Tony was so effective for us down the stretch and I can't imagine that his appetite wasn't sort of whet from his contributions in the playoffs."
We should have a decision of some sort within the near future. Stay tuned.