You listen when Tony Gonzalez talks. You have no choice. If you don't, he ninja kicks you in the face, which hurts, a lot. And Gonzo's interview with NFL AM today is no exception. Read the transcript or risk being ninja kicked. Don't say you weren't warned.
During the interview, Gonzo exuded pure awesomeness. He also had some interesting things to say about the offensive line.
"[I]t’s obviously the biggest question mark ... I think Peter Konz, our second-round draft choice last year out of Wisconsin, he’s going to fill in nicely at that center position. Our right tackle, Mike Johnson, he’s going into his fourth year and it’s time for him to step up; it’s time for him to go out there and claim that position for the next three or four years. If not, the competition is going to be open"
Gonzo does follow up this comment with a generic "But I have faith in the coaches" qualifier. And to be frank, he's not saying anything we haven't heard before. He's simply acknowledging the so-called elephant in the room.
Here's a question worth answering: is it really an elephant in the room? I mean, can we fairly describe the Falcons' efforts to rebuild their offensive line in those terms? Sure, the front office didn't go out and spend bunches of money in free agency to address the departure of Todd McClure and Tyson Clabo. But it's not as if they haven't done anything to fix the problem.
They've deliberately (and consistently) drafted offensive linemen. They're still waiting for Mike Johnson to come around, and hopefully Konz's late-season success in 2012 will continue in 2013, notwithstanding his move back to center. Nothing is guaranteed going forward, but I'd imagine the Falcons took stock of what have prior to the draft and free agency. To me, their non-action speaks volumes. It says the current personnel has potential, enough potential to carry this offense to the promised land.