Nov 16, 2003; Cincinnati, OH, USA; Kansas City Chiefs tight end Tony Gonzalez (88) prior to the game against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium. The Bengals beat the Chiefs 24-19. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-US PRESSWIRE
Kansas City Chiefs GM Scott Pioli and Atlanta Falcons GM Thomas Dimitroff joined the Border Patrol this week to talk about Sunday's game. Pioli and Dimitroff are friends and former co-workers so they go way back.
They also share a connection that us KC Chiefs fans care a lot about -- Tony Gonzalez. Pioli traded Gonzalez to Dimitroff's Falcons shortly after he arrived in Kansas City. Pioli talked about the decision to trade TG and Dimitroff followed up with some words on what TG has meant to the Falcons.
Pioli on the trade process (emphasis mine):
"First, out of the gate, it was tough. Even though I hadn't been with Tony here, I had so much respect for him as a player. ... And I knew that he was a good player that still had more time left on his clock to be a good player. Thomas, it just so happened, he and I had talked and he was interested. ... Tony had made it clear, in a very professional, respectful way that he didn't demand his way out, he made more of a request that if we would ever consider it, he would love for us to consider moving him. ... The other thing that was really important, as he and I talked, was the fact that we hoped that when he does retire, whenever that time is, that he does retire as a Kansas City Chief. ... I felt everyone was winning. I felt Tony was going to win, the Chiefs were going to win, the Falcons were going to win."
Dimitroff on Tony G. in Atlanta:
"As we all know, Tony is, no question ... a first-ballot Hall of Famer. He's been a special addition for us and it was the right addition for us at the time. Honestly, it was a good trade on both sides. It was valuable for both organizations. And that's, ultimately, what you want in this league, to make sure you can get a deal that is right for both teams. ... For us, here, Tony has been the quiet leader that he is. He's not the stomp-around leader, but he's out there working hard all the time, and he's been good for Matt Ryan's transition and evolution as a quarterback in this league."