Tony Gonzalez is facing trade rumors as the Atlanta Falcons season fizzles, but the Pro Bowl tight end said he’s not the one pushing for a move.
As the NFL trade deadline approaches and Gonzalez nears the end of his final NFL season, many expect the Falcons to unload Gonzalez to a contender to give him one last shot at a Super Bowl in exchange for draft picks to reload the team in the future.
One of the most popular points of speculation is Kansas City, where Gonzalez spent the bulk of his career. This move would make sense on the surface, as the Chiefs could use a big target and someone in the offense to share work with Jamaal Charles.
But Tony Gonzalez insists that he’s not the one asking for a trade.
“I totally understand it,” Gonzalez told ESPN.com. “Everybody out there needs to understand that I’m not naive to it. I see it, too. This is the last [nine] weeks of my career. And right now, things are looking … you never know.
“But, like I said, I love my guys on this team too much to go ask for a trade. It would be something that would come from them where they said, ‘Hey, it makes sense because we could get something good for you and send you to a team that’s a contender.’ So I understand the thought process behind that.”
Gonzalez had been strongly considering retirement in the offseason, but decided to come back for one more season with the Atlanta Falcons. The future Hall of Famer tweeted to fans that “the lure of being on such a great team and organization, along with unbelievable fan support was too good to pass up.”
Gonzalez left training camp for a while to keep a promise to his 12-year-old son to help start his youth football career, returning a few weeks before the season started.
But this season hasn’t gone as planned for Tony Gonzalez and the Atlanta Falcons. Once a favorite to make the Super Bowl, the team is now 2-5 and far from contention in the playoff race. Still, Gonzalez has a lot left in the tank, with 93 catches for 930 yards last year and another 38 catches for 395 yards already this year.
The Tony Gonzalez trade rumors will likely continue either until the team makes a move or the NFL trade deadline passes.