Tony Gonzalez excused from next week’s minicamp

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The Falcons were willing to slow-play the recruitment of veteran tight end Tony Gonzalez, careful to give him time to make a decision to come back for another year.

Likewise, they’re going to give him even more time off.

According to the team’s official website, Falcons coach Mike Smith has excused Gonzalez from next week’s mandatory minicamp.

Easing up on him in June is probably the smart thing. Frankly, there’s probably not much the 37-year-old tight end is going to learn while running around in shorts that he doesn’t already know.

And giving him the time will also give more reps to some young players, the ones they’ll need when he doesn’t come back at some point.