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Extending Gonzalez an easy call for Falcons

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Dan Parr
Associate editor

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Posted Jan. 06, 2012 @ 6:23 p.m. ET
By Dan Parr

The Falcons moved swiftly to extend Tony Gonzalez's contract through 2012 once he made the decision to play for at least one more year. They announced the deal before the team's Week 17 game. We hear Gonzalez wanted to put questions about considering retirement to rest before the playoffs began — he's still searching for his first postseason victory — and it also gave GM Thomas Dimitroff a clearer picture of the team's financial situation before an offseason in which some other key players, including DE John Abraham, CB Brent Grimes and C Todd McClure, are due to hit the open market. Gonzalez, who earned the 12th Pro Bowl nod of his career this season, may be able to play at a high level for another few years, but, while he's in great physical condition, his approach is to take it one season at a time. Among tight ends, the 35-year-old Gonzalez finished the regular season fourth in receptions (80), fifth in receiving yards (875) and tied for fourth in touchdowns (seven).

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