FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. Tony Gonzalez says he'll probably take a break from his usual pregame routine on Sunday when the Falcons open their season at Kansas City -- the city where he built his reputation for 12 seasons as perhaps the greatest player to suit up at tight end.
For someone with the unrivaled professionalism of Gonzalez, the act of changing his routine is no small matter. But it's also because of that professionalism that Gonzalez will take extraordinary steps to ensure that he has enough time before game time so that once kickoff arrives the game can proceed as normally as possible.
He expects to see former teammates on the field, as well as Chiefs employees with whom he has long-standing relationships. He knows they'll want to come up and shake hands and give hugs and he'll want to reciprocate.
On the whole, he says he doesn't know how he'll react in such an emotional situation.
"I still have a lot of ties to the city so it's going to be special," Gonzalez said. "It's...