In April of 2009, the Kansas City Chiefs traded TE Tony Gonzalez to the Atlanta Falcons for a 2010 second-round draft pick. Gonzalez had been asking for a trade since the previous October, and few around Kansas City could blame him. The Chiefs had won a total of six games in the previous two seasons, didn’t look anywhere close to ready for a Super Bowl run, and the 33-year-old Gonzalez felt the clock ticking.
With the aforementioned draft pick, the Chiefs selected Javier Arenas, an undersized cornerback/return man out of Alabama. Arenas hovered around mediocrity during his three-year tenure in Kansas City before being traded to the Arizona Cardinals for FB Anthony Sherman last April.
Sherman doesn’t produce a lot offensively, but is a great run-blocker and helped pave the way for Jamaal Charles’ career year in 2013. The Chiefs got some decent compensation for Gonzalez, but almost five-years later, it’s pretty clear that the Falcons won the trade.
Gonzalez was selected to the Pro Bowl in four of five seasons in Atlanta. He receive All-Pro honors in 2012, and never finished lower than fourth in receptions among tight ends. He averaged 81.8 receptions, 837.4 receiving yards and seven touchdowns in five years with the Falcons. What’s more is that he put those numbers together from the ages 33-37.
It was the right move for everybody involved. A second-round pick was a good deal for Kansas City, and had they drafted Jimmy Graham, Geno Atkins or NaVorro Bowman (who were all available) with the pick, it may be a different story. But with the underwhelming performance of Arenas and Tony G playing like an ageless freak, the trade was a clear win for the Falcons.