ATLANTA - DECEMBER 13: Tony Gonzalez #88 of the Atlanta Falcons against the New Orleans Saints at Georgia Dome on December 13, 2009 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Injury problems and poor play have produced a thus far disappointing season for the Atlanta Falcons, which may work out to be an unexpected opportunity for the Kansas City Chiefs. Tight end Tony Gonzalez, a long time Chief, is in the final year of his career and wants to play for a contender. A possible return to Kansas City has been rumored.
Alex Smith could have a new toy
Gonzalez would without a doubt be an upgrade for the Kansas City offense, but not a desperately needed one. Sean McGrath has filled the tight end role well for the Chiefs and at some point Kansas City will get Anthony Fasano and Travis Kelce back healthy. The Chiefs could stick with what they have at tight end and be fine.
This gives Kansas City nearly all the leverage in this situation. If Atlanta decides that it does want to deal Gonzalez to get something for him while they can, the Chiefs can afford to show a poker face. Kansas City shouldn’t spend a lot for a player who doesn’t fill a desperate need and will only be playing the rest of this current season.
The power of the walk away
If Kansas City can get an Anquan Boldin-esque deal for Gonzalez, something similar to one 6th round draft pick, then the potential benefit would be worth the cost. Gonzalez will retire as the greatest tight end to ever play the game and spending his last season helping the team that helped him obtain that greatness win in the postseason would be a fitting end to his career.
However, if Atlanta demands too high of a price, the Chiefs should stand pat. While Gonzalez would be an upgrade at tight end, less than one season of that upgrade at a position the Chiefs are already doing well in isn’t worth giving up a third round or higher draft pick.
Bringing Gonzalez back would be an amazing story and would improve the Chiefs’ offense. Kansas City can’t mortgage its future to make the move though.
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