While it’s going to be strange not seeing Tony Gonzalez on the practice fields in Flowery Branch when training camp opens July 25th, the current Atlanta Falcons tight ends know that they aren’t going to be asked or expected to “replace” the future Pro Football Hall of Fame TE. In 2014, the team's tight ends, coached by Chris Scelfo, will be asked to play a large role in keeping QB Matt Ryan clean, as well as making the grabs, whenever Ryan throws their way.
Toilolo played in all 16 games last season, including three starts, finishing with 11 receptions for 55 yards and two TDs. He added a lot of muscle in the offseason, especially to his upper body, aiming to become an even stronger force in the pass blocking game. Opposing linebackers will likely have a hard time defending against his height (6-8) and vertical abilities.
Shuler was added to the team’s practice squad last season and his commitment to the Atlanta Falcons program in the offseason was awarded with more looks in OTA and minicamp practices. He’ll make a strong push for the third TE spot on the roster, likely competing with Jacob Pedersen.
Pascoe brings his talents to Atlanta, following a five-year campaign with the New York Giants. In 2013, he played in all 16 games, including six starts, finishing with 12 receptions for 81 yards, along with one carry for two yards. The veteran has the most experience of any TE on the team’s roster.
The Atlanta Falcons coaching staff worked with Pedersen, during the Senior Bowl in January, months before the team signed him as an undrafted rookie free agent. Slated by some as a fifth to seventh-round pick, the TE could prove to be a steal. At 6-5, 240 pounds, Pedersen finished his college career ranked seventh all-time at the University of Wisconsin with 17 TDs, the most by a tight end in school history. His 2013 stats included 39 receptions for 551 yards and three TDs.
Wozniak (6-4, 255 pounds) enters training camp, following a college career with the Wisconsin Badgers. He played in 47 games, including 21 starts, during his final two seasons, walking away with 15-career receptions for 127 yards and four touchdowns. Teamed with current Falcons rookie at Wisconsin, TE Jacob Pedersen, Wozniak ended 2013 with six catches for 33 yards and four scores.