Red Zone

Another season for Tony Gonzalez?

Tony Gonzalez said many times through the course of last season and when it was finished that he would likely retire this offseason. But according to recent reports, Gonzalez’s stance on playing another season for the Atlanta Falcons is changing.

Other than to say he’s talked recently with Gonzalez, the former Chiefs tight end, Atlanta Falcons coach Mike Smith declined to say today at the NFL Scouting Combine whether he believed Gonzalez would play another season.

“I hope you understand when I talk to my players I try to keep those conversations private,’’ Smith said. “I’ll speak with him again. The timeframe on that is sooner (rather) than later.’’

But Smith made it clear the Falcons would like for Gonzalez to play another season. Gonzalez had yet another strong season, his 16th in the NFL, in 2012, catching 93 passes and scoring eight touchdowns.

He also caught 14 passes and scored two touchdowns in Atlanta’s two playoff games.

“We know that Tony had an outstanding year for us,’’ Smith said. “I think the 90-plus catches this season tell what kind of season he had plus it tells what he’s capable of doing.’’