Best Kansas City Chiefs Players Tournament, Final Four: Gonzalez vs. Thomas

Farzin Vousoughian@farzin21Contributor IIIApril 11, 2012

KANSAS CITY, MO - SEPTEMBER 28:  Tony Gonzalez #88 of the Kansas City Chiefs catches a pass in front of Boss Bailey #97 of the Denver Broncos on September 28, 2008 at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

We are halfway through the Final Four, and after today, we will know the final two participants and find out who is the best player in franchise history, decided by the fans.

On Monday, No. 1 QB Len Dawson ousted No. 2 S Deron Cherry in the polls to earn himself a spot in the finals.

Today, No. 1 LB Derrick Thomas and No. 1 TE Tony Gonzalez will go head-to-head in the polls. It should be exciting to see the results of this poll.

As always, the winner will be determined at 11:59 p.m. ET.


No. 1 LB Derrick Thomas vs. No. 1 TE Tony Gonzalez

Derrick Thomas

With the fourth pick in the 1989 NFL draft, the Kansas City Chiefs selected Derrick Thomas out of Alabama. Thomas was the first defensive player selected in the 1989 draft and proved why he earned the honors he won.

While spending his entire career with the Chiefs, Thomas collected a franchise-high 126.5 sacks. His most dominant season came in 1990, when he crushed opposing quarterbacks 20 times. Throughout the '90s, Thomas was known as the league’s most dangerous pass-rusher.

He was the league's Defensive Rookie of the Year and went on to be not only noticed, but also unstoppable.

Thomas holds the franchise record for forced fumbles in a season and career, fumbles recovered in a career, sacks in a single season and safeties in a career. The most prestigious record held by Thomas is when he recorded an NFL-high seven sacks in one game.

His career was cut short during a car accident in 2000.

Thomas was voted to nine Pro Bowls and won six All-Pro honors. He has a spot in both the Chiefs and the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He is also one of five Chiefs players to win the Walter Payton Man of the Year Award. His jersey, No. 58, is retired by the Chiefs.

Thomas passed No. 2 G Will Shields in the Elite Eight.


Tony Gonzalez

In 190 games as a member of the Kansas City Chiefs, Tony Gonzalez had no problem shattering franchise receiving charts despite playing tight end.

Gonzalez has 916 receptions for 10,940 yards and 76 touchdowns in 12 years. He is the only player in franchise history with more than 900 receptions and 10,000 receiving yards.

His best season came in 2004, when he shattered the record for most receptions in a single season by a tight end with 102, which was also more than any pass-catcher that season. Gonzalez finished the season with a career-high 1,258 receiving yards.

Gonzalez owns the league record for career receptions, receiving yards and touchdown catches among all tight ends. Gonzalez has his name on many records, though his most notable accomplishment is placing himself second all-time for most receptions in a career.

He also owns the record for most 1,000-yard receiving seasons for a tight end.

While playing for the Chiefs, Gonzalez has played in 10 Pro Bowls and has earned All-Pro honors nine times. The Chiefs have not issued Gonzalez’s jersey number, 88, to another player during the regular season since his departure in 2009.

Gonzalez passed No. 2 RB Priest Holmes in the Elite Eight.