Tony Gonzalez may be leaving the door cracked when it comes to making a return to the NFL, but the Falcons aren’t having any of it.
While speaking with Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com about saving a spot for Gonzalez if he were to decide to come back, Thomas Dimitroff, the Falcons General Manager, said, “I believe Tony Gonzalez has retired and he’ll have a fantastic career in the media business.”
It’s clear that the Falcons want to avoid a Farve-like retirement scenario at all costs. On the other hand, after hearing that Gonzalez’s attitude within the Falcons locker room may have been bad, verging on cancerous, after not being sent to a contender at the trade deadline, Dimitroff may in fact be slamming the retirement door shut and double bolting it.
After a season that can be characterized as nothing short of disastrous, the best thing Atlanta can do is move on and leave the past behind them. Gonzalez played at a high level over the last few seasons, but it would be ridiculous for the Falcons front office to make any sacrifices in order to prepare for the possible return of their tight-end.
Similarly, it would be best if Gonzalez himself put his football career in the rearview mirror. The Falcons will continue to hold his rights next season, and any return would have to go through Atlanta. Even if they do give up his rights, Gonzalez would then have to go through waivers, where there is no guarantee he will land on a contending team’s roster.
It’s always hard to leave the game while still chasing that elusive title, though, if Gonzalez keeps up the fight, he may end up hurting his legacy to a greater extent than a Super Bowl ring would help it.
Like this? CLICK HERE to read about Tony Gonzalez’s view on his retirement.