ATLANTA (AP) — The Atlanta Falcons obtained tight end Tony Gonzalez from the Kansas City Chiefs on Thursday for a draft pick next year.
The Falcons will send a second-round pick in 2010 to Kansas City in exchange for Gonzalez, the only tight end in NFL history selected to 10 Pro Bowls, the Chiefs announced.
Gonzalez caught 96 passes for 1,058 yards and 10 touchdowns in 2008. He owns NFL career records for tight ends with 916 receptions, 10,940 yards receiving, 76 TDs receiving and 26 100-yard receiving games.
Chiefs chairman Clark Hunt called Gonzalez "one of the finest players in Chiefs history."
A person with knowledge of the negotiations said the Falcons have reached agreement with Gonzalez on a new contract. The person requested anonymity because the agreement has not been announced.
The 33-year-old Gonzalez asked to be traded last October. But then-general manager Carl Peterson said no team Gonzalez was willing to go to made a good enough offer.
General manager Scott Pioli said it wasn't easy to trade the star, who played in 188 regular-season games for Kansas City.
"From an organizational as well as personal standpoint there are mixed emotions," Pioli said. "I have the highest personal and professional respect for Tony and consider him to be a future Pro Football Hall of Famer."
The trade addresses one of the Falcons' top needs, freeing the organization to make defense the top priority in this weekend's draft.
The Falcons expect to receive compensatory picks next year for losing several free agents, including cornerback Domonique Foxworth and linebackers Michael Boley and Keith Brooking, making it easier for the team to trade the second-round pick to the Chiefs.
Gonzalez will join Pro Bowl receiver Roddy White to give the Falcons another top target for 2008 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year Matt Ryan.
"Every team in this league dreams of having Tony Gonzalez run out of the tunnel for them," Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff said.
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