As teams look to gain players over the Draft weekend, the Chargers say goodbye to one of their best ever.
Earlier on this year I wrote this about future Hall of Famer Antonio Gates. It seemed unthinkable that we’d ever see Antonio Gates in different colors, but here we are:
While TE Jason Witten is preparing to retire, TE Antonio Gates wants to continue playing, though the Charges informed him this off-season they do not plan to bring him back to LA, per league source.
It means one of top all-time TEs is now willing to finish his career elsewhere.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) April 27, 2018
Gates’ records are endless.
They include having the most catches (927), yards (11,508), and touchdowns (114) in Chargers history. That’s three more touchdowns than any other tight end in the history of the game. He broke the record last year at Stubhub Stadium against Miami, back in September.
In terms of his current status, Gates played his lowest amount snaps last season. When the Chargers picked Hunter Henry in the 2nd round of the 2016 draft, it was inevitable that his role would decrease. In 2017, he set a career lows in catches (30) and touchdowns (3), since his rookie year. The changing of the guard is complete.
Lets not forget in all this, the 37-year old went undrafted from the 2003 draft.
The relationship formed with quartherback Phillip Rivers is also historic. The pair have combined for 87 touchdowns through the years. That’s the 2nd highest QB/receiver combination in history.
As per Schefter’s tweet, Gates will look for other options and not look to retire as a Charger (yet). A championship challenging team would make sense, but could make it more painful for fans, if he can end his career with a ring.
– Thomas Herd is a Managing Editor for Full Press Coverage Sports Media. He covers the Los Angeles Chargers. Follow him on Twitter @chargers_uk.