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TE Antonio Gates - San Diego Chargers

6-4, 260Born: 6-18-1980College: Kent StateDrafted: ---

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Photo: Robert Hanashiro, US Presswire

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News you need to know

General News (Tue Feb 2): is likely to return in 2016. Gates, who will turn 36 in June, has given no indications he's ready to retire.

Week 21: bye week

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Recent Stats and Projections

WEEKOPPoSNAPRECYDTDFumLPts
17 at DEN 62 3 34 1 0 9.4

Recent Game Summaries

2015 Week 17 vs DEN (5 / 3 / 34 / 1 rec)

Gates wasn't terribly busy, doing his usual work on crossing routes and underneath work over the middle. While he has slowed from his heyday, he's still simply too big to cover at times. And never was that more evident than on his touchdown reception. He went up and over his defender to grab the ball right over his head, somehow corraling a pass that the defender had better positioning than he did. To add to the difficulty, he also had to maintain possession as he fell hard to the ground and held on with one hand to establish the catch.

2015 Week 16 vs OAK (2 / 2 / 11 / 0 rec)

Gates had an incredibly quiet game. He had two short receptions early on, one of them coming on third down in the flat. He had a chance to bull his way ahead to pick up the first down, but an excellent defensive play prevented that from happening. He all but disappeared after halftime, as Ladarius Green became the primary tight end weapon in the passing game.

2015 Week 15 vs MIA (9 / 6 / 88 / 0 rec)

The old vet had a very solid game, but was close to a huge game on a couple of occasions. His first two receptions were both over the middle, and he went up high to snag both of them. He later added a 30-yard fade down the sideline on what was an absolutely perfectly-thrown ball by Philip Rivers. But when Rivers targeted him on a fade to the corner in the end zone, Gates couldn't get his hands up to make the play. And the reason was because there was a defender draped all over him (although no call was made). In the second half, Gates was hit in stride on a crossing route with a lot of room in front of him. But a nice tackle from behind by the defender prevented it from going for a huge gain. Late in the game, Gates was removed from the contest along with Rivers and wide receiver Malcom Floyd so that the home crowd could give them one last ovation (in case this was the final game the Chargers will play in San Diego).

2015 Week 14 vs KC (8 / 6 / 76 / 0 rec)

Gates was really the only Charger who salvaged something productive in this game from a fantasy perspective. Week after week, Gates continues to pretty much do the same things over and over, and defenses are almost powerless to stop it. Run 8-10 yards upfield, stop, turn around, defender can't get around the big body, catch the ball, turn upfield and dive ahead for another yard or two. Rinse, repeat. In this one, he also made a tremendous one-handed snag on a floater towards the sideline. Gates showed soft hands in first deflecting it to himself, then cradling it in and keeping his feet inbounds. He was also hit in stride on a deep ball down the seam for a nice gain. And his last significant contribution was a big one, going up in traffic over the middle on a game-saving fourth down pass play with less than a minute remaining to keep the drive alive. Later on in that drive, Rivers threw a deep ball in the end zone on a third down pass play, but Gates couldn't get in position to make the catch. Once San Diego got close to the end zone, the offense stalled and was unable to punch one in for the tie. Curiously, Gates did not see any targets in the end zone from short yardage in that situation with the game on the line.

2015 Week 13 vs DEN (9 / 6 / 50 / 0 rec)

With Keenan Allen out for the season, Gates enters every game as the de factor number one option in the receiving game. In this game, Stevie Johnson was completely flummoxed by the Denver defense and didn't even see a single target. And the other primary option in the passing game, wide receiver Dontrelle Inman, left the game with what appeared to be a very serious neck injury early on. It's no surprise, then, that Gates led all players on both teams in targets. His first look came early in the first quarter, a floater down the sideline that would have gone for over twenty yards. But just as he was about to bring it in, he was drilled by a defender, jarring the ball loose. On his next target, he brought in a crossing route and lunged for the first down marker to convert it. He continued getting open almost at will, but more often than not it was crossing routes and short grabs over the middle for minimal gains. Part of the reason he wasn't able to do much down the field is the same reason none of the Chargers could do much down the field; because Philip Rivers was constantly under pressure, and didn't have enough time for anything deep to develop.

2015 Week 12 vs JAX (6 / 4 / 53 / 2 rec)

Gates was quiet for most of the first quarter, then shook loose of his defender for a big 27-yard pass play down the right sideline to end the quarter. He was tackled awkwardly on the play, and appeared a bit slow to get up. That seemed meaningful as he wasn't even targeted again until just before halftime. However, he quickly proved he was healthy enough by going up high on an inside slant to easily beat his defender for a touchdown. His many wasn't even within arm's reach of Gates by the time he caught it, making it look just too easy. Following a quick Jacksonville turnover, Rivers found Gates once again for a score, this one just 1:04 after the previous one. It was a fade pattern to the corner, and Gates simply beat his man off the line and got wide open. Gates didn't do as much in the second half, although he did show a willingness to get physical on one pass play. He made a short grab out of the backfield, and instead of dropping to the turf or seeking out the sideline, he lowered his shoulder into the defender to bowl him over. The main takeaway here is that while Gates may not be 100% healthy again this season, he's certainly enough of a red zone threat to justify him as a fantasy threat. And any issues that may have occurred on the sideline last weekend between Gates and Rivers, are certainly in the rear-view mirror.

2015 Week 11 vs KC (3 / 1 / 6 / 0 rec)

After getting two weeks of rest since the last game, Gates still appears to be playing at far less than 100%.He caught just one pass, and was barely even targeted aside from that one (despite the fact that the huge majority of San Diego pass attempts were of the short and intermediate variety, Gates' specialty). Early on, Gates was seen yelling at quarterback Philip Rivers on the sideline. Things appeared to get heated, and Gates walked away as Rivers was still talking to him. At that point, he still hadn't caught a pass. Facing a 2nd and long pass play, Gates got wide open down the seam for what would have been a uge gain, but Rivers sailed it way over his head and not even close to where he wanted it. That was Gates' best opportunity to make a play, and even that wasn't really all that close.

2015 Week 9 vs CHI (11 / 6 / 69 / 0 rec)

Gates had a fairly solid game, thanks in large part to a huge 40-yard catch and run in the second half. We use the term "run" liberally, because he got open near the sideline and caught a long pass - and then kind of stumbled his way downfield for some extra yardage. He still doesn't seem to be moving fluidly on his injured knee. Later on in the fourth quarter, Gates appeared to have caught a touchdown in the back corner of the end zone following a Philip Rivers rollout. But a Charger lineman was illegally downfield on the play, negating the score. Later, Gates caught a short pass over the middle and was tackled down at the 5-yard line. Not quite the touchdown from a few plays earlier. Most of his targets were short passes over the middle, as usual. But he didn't convert very many of them, and aside from the one long gain, most of his receptions went for very little yardage (doing some quick math, his other five receptions totaled just 29 yards aside from the one big gain).

2015 Week 8 vs BAL (5 / 4 / 56 / 0 rec)

Gates was questionable to play this game due to an MCL injury (knee). At times last week, it was reported that it could be a "multi-week injury", but Gates was surprisingly on the active list for this game. He was on the sideline to open the game, but looked plenty healthy going across the field on a crossing route for a 30-yard gain early on. Soon after, he drew a pass interference penalty for a first down with the defender draped all over him. Despite the fact that wide receiver Keenan Allen missed the entire second half, Gates would only add a handful of receptions the rest of the game.

2015 Week 6 vs GB (16 / 9 / 95 / 0 rec)

On a day that Keenan Allen hauled in 14 receptions, it was actually the big tight end Gates who saw the most targets in the game. In fairness, the Chargers leaned on him much more heavily after Allen left the game with an injury, but he was an integral part of the attack right from the outset. He could have scored very early on in the game, streaking wide open towards the end zone. But Philip Rivers was hit as he threw, which disrupted the timing and power of the pass and the ball sailed well over Gates' head. Soon after, Gates nearly hauled in another touchdown but allowed the ball to bounce off his fingertips for a drop. At worst, it would have been a first down and goal from the goal line for the Chargers. Instead, it was a fourth down drop that resulted in the ball going to the Packers. Gates would remain fairly quiet until he grabbed a pass late in the first half, but he still wasn't putting up huge stats. That all changed in the second half, as Rivers really leaned on him. Gates had one reception on a crossing route that went for 21 yards, but could have gone for many more if wide receiver Dontrelle Inman had been able to hold his block just a bit longer (or if Gates had read the block differently and cut the opposite way). Late in the game, Gates showed some tremendous athleticism by snagging a pass over the middle with one hand. On the team's last-gasp drive to try and tie it up, Gates was the target of a pass along the back of the end zone from Rivers, but the ball never reall had a great chance to be completed. Curiously, the other three goal line opportunities on that series all went to Danny Woodhead.

2015 Week 5 vs PIT (11 / 9 / 92 / 2 rec)

The Chargers seemed intent on announcing Gates' return and getting him his 100th touchdown early as he dominated the opening drive with three catches. The veteran was sprinkled in working the short middle as the Chargers offense sputtered, and then he became prominent again when the Chargers closed in for their second score, notched once again by Gates. While he was being spelled and played from all of the snaps, Gates was on the field and active in the offense when and where it counted most.

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Latest News

Chargers | Tight ends to be issue for Chargers? (Tue Feb 2, 02:46 PM) - San Diego Chargers TEs Antonio Gates, Ladarius Green, David B. Johnson and John Phillips will all become free agents if they are not re-signed by March 9. Gates is expected to return, however.

Our View: Gates seems like one of those players that is going to retire with the team he started with. The former basketball star was quite a find for the Chargers, and he proved last year that he's still got something left in the tank. The Green experiment is over as he never played up to his potential with the Chargers. Phillips is a nice all-purpose tight end, but he does get banged up a lot. The position is clearly going to be one of emphasis in the offseason.
link to story   

Chargers | Antonio Gates likely to return (Tue Feb 2, 01:36 AM) - San Diego Chargers TE Antonio Gates is likely to return in 2016. Gates, who will turn 36 in June, has given no indications he's ready to retire.

Our View: Gates may not be the same player he used to be, but he proved in 2015 that there's still plenty left in the tank.
link to story   

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