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Falcons TE Gonzalez retires

The SportsXchange

Atlanta Falcons tight end Tony Gonzalez officially retired Monday after 17 seasons in the NFL.

Gonzalez spent the majority of his career with the Kansas City Chiefs, who made the announcement.

Gonzalez played in 270 regular-season games with 254 starts with the Chiefs (1997-08) and Falcons (2009-13). The 13-time Pro Bowler owns NFL career records for tight ends with 1,325 receptions, 15,127 receiving yards, 111 receiving touchdowns and 31 100-yard receiving games.

Gonzalez made 916 catches for 10,940 yards with 76 touchdowns and 26 100-yard games with the Chiefs, the highest totals of any player in franchise history.

"On behalf of the entire Chiefs family, I want to congratulate Tony on an incredible career," chairman and CEO Clark Hunt said in a statement. "What he was able to accomplish during his time in the NFL is truly remarkable, and I have no doubt that Tony is a first-ballot hall of famer. We were very blessed to have him in a Chiefs uniform for 12 seasons, and his contributions on and off the field were extraordinary and will never be forgotten. I want to thank Tony for his time in Kansas City and wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors. He will always be considered a part of the Chiefs family."

Only guard Will Shields (224), kicker Nick Lowery (212) and punter Jerrel Wilson (203) played more games for the Chiefs than Gonzalez (188). He started 174 games, which ranks second in franchise history behind only Shields (223).

Gonzalez caught at least one pass in a franchise-record 131 consecutive games and finished with 211 consecutive games with a reception.

The University of California product was the first tight end in NFL history with 16 consecutive seasons of 50 or more catches and only player at that position with four 1,000-yard seasons, all with the Chiefs.

He owns franchise records with 10,954 yards from scrimmage and ranks second with 76 touchdowns behind running back Priest Holmes (83).

Gonzalez was the No. 13 overall draft pick by the Chiefs in 1997 and was traded to the Atlanta Falcons in 2009.
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