After an incredible 15-year career with the Los Angeles Chargers, Antonio Gates will not be back for another season with the team. Though he hasn’t announced his retirement, he will either be playing somewhere else next season or enjoying the next phase of his life.
An 8-time Pro Bowl selection, Gates put up amazing numbers for the Chargers, including 927 receptions for 11,508 yards and 114 touchdowns, the most ever by a tight end. Many will argue that he’s the greatest tight end to ever play and the numbers support that position.
In addition, he was selected to the NFL’s All-Pro team three times, is a member of the Chargers’ 50th anniversary team and was chosen as part of the All-Decade team for the 2000s.
Not bad for an undrafted basketball player.
With Gates moving on, it will be tough for many Chargers fans who remember all of those catches, all of those big plays and all of that dedication. More importantly, Gates is an even better person off the field.
A likely first-ballot Hall of Famer, Gates had a slew of great games over the years. On that list is multiple games with more than one touchdown catch and plenty more where he caught at least 10 passes.
But which performances were the best?
That’s what this list is going to tackle. I am going to count down the five best game of Gates’ storied career as a member of the Bolts. These games will not only be his best performances from a statistical standpoint, but extra importance will be placed on those games in which his team won.
With that in mind, let’s relive some Chargers history here.