Atlanta Falcons tight end Tony Gonzalez is set to return to the Falcons for his 17th season in the NFL, the AJC reports.
Gonzalez said prior to the start of last season that the 2012 season would be his last. The Falcons organization, including quarterback Matt Ryan, reportedly lobbied Gonzalez hard to return to the team.
The Pro-Bowl tight end had a spectacular season with 107 passes for 1,069 yards and 10 touchdowns passes over 18 games. He made one of the key catches that helped the Falcons get into field-goal range for their game-winning kick against the Seattle Seahawks in the NFC divisional playoff at the Georgia Dome. The Falcons lost to the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship after blowing a 17-0 lead.
Fox Sports reported Gonzalez saying, “After discussing it with my family and really, truly struggling with this decision, I informed the Falcons that I would like to return for one more shot.”
Before last season win against Seattle, Gonzalez had never won a playoff game.
“Considering how this season ended, I wanted to give it another run with Matt (Ryan), Smitty (head coach Mike Smith) and the guys we have in there. It was the first time I had won a playoff game and hopefully coming back once more we can take it one step further,” Gonzalez said. “I am coming back for one reason and one reason only, the chance to win a Super Bowl.”