The Atlanta Falcons suffered a hard loss to the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship Game on Sunday, Jan. 20, 2013, but they may soon suffer an even greater loss. Falcons' tight end Tony Gonzalez has said throughout the season that he was more than sure he would retire after this year, and now he said that Sunday was "probably" his last game.
"It's probably the last time I'm going to wear that uniform," Gonzalez said after the Falcons' 28-24 loss. "I didn't want to take it off, to tell you the truth. All good things come to an end and, like I said all season long, this is probably my last one. What an unbelievable ride."
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One of the most well known, most talented, and popular tight ends in the history of the NFL, Gonzalez had eight receptions for 72 yards and a touchdown in what may have been his last game.
During his 16-year career, Gonzalez has been voted to the Pro Bowl 13 times, and that includes this season. He most likely won't play in the game according to what he said on Sunday as well. It was the third straight time he had been voted in with the Falcons.
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While nothing is set in stone, Gonzalez is still going to talk over possible retirement with his family before making a decision.
"I'm not going to cry about it," Gonzalez said after the conclusion of his 16th season. "I walk away with the satisfaction I left everything, absolutely everything, every time I was on the field.
"I wish it would have culminated with the Super Bowl, but it didn't."
Gonzalez started his career with the Kansas City Chiefs after being drafted 13th overall in 1997. He is second on the career receptions list with 1,242 and sixth overall with 103 touchdowns receptions. That is good for first at the tight end position. Overall, he ranks seventh on the career receiving yards list with 14,268.