It's officially the offseason and the Falcons talk will continue to swirl around Tony Gonzalez and the final five percent of his decision to retire. But while the world waits, let's take a look one last time at Gonzalez' 2012 season.
Pro Bowl honors at 36 show that Gonzalez didn't slow down in 2012 and stats and the eyeball test says he was still among the very best at his position in the league this year. In the postseason, he was arguably the best tight end playing. Atlanta's win over Seattle was Gonzalez' first in the postseason and he played like he was on a mission. His two touchdowns tied Baltimore's Dennis Pitta for the most among tight ends in the playoffs and his 129 yards was sixth.
The tight end has always been a key target on third downs and the postseason didn't change this. Of his 14 catches in the playoffs, 10 were first-down conversions, a percentage of 71.4, third highest among tight ends with 10 or more catches. His 14 overall receptions were the third most. It was a dominating postseason performance, not unlike his regular season.
Gonzalez' 93 catches, tied for fourth highest of his career, was second in the NFL among all tight ends. His 930 yards was third among his position group for 2012 and it ranked as the fifth highest total of his career. His eight TD receptions were tied for third at the tight end position. Demonstrating just how clutch he is, 65 of his 93 grabs went for first downs in 2012, a rate of 69.9 percent. Those first-down catches ranked first among tight ends by six catches. His first-down percentage just edged New Orleans' Jimmy Graham for tops at the position.
His 58.1 yards per game ranked fourth and this season was Gonzalez' sixth straight season without recording a fumble. He only has six in his 16-year career.