The most productive tight end in the history of the NFL is officially putting off retirement for one more year.

Tony Gonzalez told FOX Sports in an exclusive interview that he has now told the Atlanta Falcons he is coming back and the two sides are on the verge of a new contract that will put him back with Matt Ryan and Co. for one more run.

"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," Gonzalez told FOX Sports after meeting with doctors in order to get medical clearance. "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."

The all-time leading receiver among tight ends and second only to Jerry Rice in all time receptions with 1,242, Gonzalez insists he thought his mind was made up in the other direction and was well on his way to a happy post-NFL career. But the lure of getting to his first Super Bowl seemed too close to pass up.

"I was done, I thought I had my mind made up," said Gonzalez. "This whole year I knew it would be my last but the way our final game ended and talking to all the guys in the locker room, in the end it was too difficult of a way for me to step away from the game. It's not often in a career you're around a group like we have down in Atlanta."

Getting the 13-time Pro Bowler to return had seemed like a virtual impossibility. One obstacle, Gonzalez actually had to hold off on three different offers from television networks for the chance to play in his first Super Bowl, hoping such opportunities will still be waiting one year later.