The Chiefs have one of if not the best tight end in the NFL in Travis Kelce. However, the standard for his position in Kansas City was set two decades ago.

Tony Gonzalez played for the Chiefs for 12 seasons. He was named an All-Pro nine times and made the Pro Bowl on 10 occasions during his time there. In his final five seasons with the Atlanta Falcons, Gonzalez made four more Pro Bowls and added another All-Pro honor.

Respected league analyst Bucky Brooks put out a list of his best tight ends of all time on Friday. Sitting in the top spot, was Gonzalez.

“The gold standard at the position racked up 1,300-plus catches and 15,000-plus yards as a dependable pass-catcher over the middle of the field. The former college basketball standout utilized his size, athleticism and hand-eye coordination to outmaneuver linebackers and safeties between the hashes. With 11 straight seasons of at least 70 catches and 16 years with 600-plus receiving yards, Gonzalez was a model of consistency as a dominant player at the position.”

No matter the quarterback or team, Gonzalez produced at a high level and did it up until his retirement. Gonzalez racked up four 1,000-yard seasons with the Chiefs and had over 800 in four of his five seasons with the Falcons. In his final 10 seasons, Gonzalez had 80 or more receptions seven times, including 102 in 2004 which led the NFL, and 83 in his last campaign in 2013.

During his storied career, Gonzalez had three seasons of double-digit touchdowns, and six with eight or more. The California native currently ranks third all-time in receptions (1,325) sixth all-time in receiving yards (15,127), and eighth in receiving touchdowns (111).

The accolades for Gonzalez are outstanding. He’s a member of the NFL 2000s All-Decade Team, the NFL 100th Anniversary All-Time Team, and the Chiefs Hall of Fame. However, no honor was more deserving than when he was enshrined in the NFL Hall of Fame in 2019.

Gonzalez was dominant in an era that included other great tight ends such as Rob Gronkowski, Jason Witten, and Antonio Gates. Guys like Shannon Sharpe and Ossie Newsome should be in the discussion for the best tight ever as well, but even if someone’s choice isn’t Gonzalez, it shouldn’t take long after that to hear his name.

Feature image via Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports