Lost in the insanity of the first day of free agency was this interesting bit of news from Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com about Tony Gonzalez.
Falcons officially release Tony Gonzalez to free up that $7 million against cap. Obviously didn’t turn in his retirement paperwork.
— vaughn mcclure (@vxmcclure23) March 11, 2014
When Gonzalez returned to the Falcons last year everyone knew it would be his last year. Or at least he said it would be his last season, anyway. But in order for his return to fit within Atlanta’s budget Gonzalez had to sign a two-year deal in order to distribute some of the cap hit off of the 2013 ledger.
Here’s the thing, however: Gonzalez has not filed retirement papers with the league. There was a working theory around the league Atlanta would hold onto Gonzalez’s contract and try to trade him to a contending team at the deadline.
This statement from Gonzalez in an ESPN The Magazine feature only fueled those speculations:
“Maybe, if the team is hot in November, 9-2 or something, I could come back for the last two months.”
However that is not going to happen now that Gonzalez has been released. So what is going on with Gonzalez? Is he really retired?
This brings up two new questions: 1. Will he remain a free agent and try to come back in November? 2. Would he consider signing a one-day deal and retire as a Kansas City Chief?
Option number one shouldn’t be dismissed as Gonzalez has already proven he is the Brett Favre of tight ends. It would seem unlikely Gonzalez would choose the Chiefs over Seattle, San Francisco, Denver and New England so now would be a good time to kill any dreams you may have of him making a Kansas City comeback.
Option number two, however, seems more plausible. Gonzalez spent the majority of his career in Kansas City and is probably the franchise’s best receiver of all-time. Consider that he is the Chiefs’ all-time leader in receptions, receiving yards, and receiving touchdowns. It would only makes sense for him to go out as a Chief. But is that what Gonzalez wants?
Obviously, I’d love him to retire as a Chief and I think it would be a great way for him to exit the league. But I’m not sure if that’s what Gonzalez wants to do. What do you think, Addicts? Would or should Gonzalez consider exiting the NFL as a Chief?