NFC South: Gonzalez trade
The Atlanta Falcons got a league-low 211 receiving yards out of their tight ends last season. At that pace, it would have taken the Falcons about 50 years to get what they added Thursday.
That's Tony Gonzalez, who is the NFL leader in career receiving yards by a tight end with 10,940. He's also the career leader for receptions (916) and touchdown catches (76) by a tight end. Gonzalez also has been selected to 10 Pro Bowls, the most ever by a tight end.
Anybody think offensive coordinator Mike Mularkey, who seemed to have his tight ends blocking on every play last season, might be putting a few new pages into the playbook right now?
Posted by ESPN.com's Pat Yasinskas
I've got to admit, I was skeptical when the talk of Atlanta trading a second-round pick to Kansas City for tight end Tony Gonzalez first came up. Heck, I was flat-out opposed to the idea.
Now, that a deal has happened, I'm liking the move a lot. That's for one very specific reason: The Falcons gave up a pick in 2010, not in this year's draft. That makes all the difference in the world.
Giving up a pick in this year's draft -- when the Falcons have needs all over on defense -- made no sense. Giving it up for next year is a whole different story.
By getting Gonzalez in the fold now, the Falcons can use basically their entire draft on defense. That's great because they can use someone like defensive tackle Peria Jerry, linebacker Clay Matthews or defensive back Vontae Davis. Then, they can turn around and get another potential defensive starter in the second round.
Giving up a 2010 pick has no immediate impact on this team and the Falcons filled perhaps their only offensive need by getting a tight end who can catch passes. They'll come out of this weekend a much better team than they were yesterday.
More importantly, the can worry about next year's draft next year.