NFL News

Antonio Gates on verge of signing with Chargers?

By Matt Pagels
CARSON, CA - SEPTEMBER 17: Antonio Gates
CARSON, CA - SEPTEMBER 17: Antonio Gates /

Are the Chargers close to re-signing tight end Antonio Gates?

The Chargers haven’t made any moves to replace tight end Hunter Henry, who is out for the season after tearing his ACL at OTAs.

They signed former Bronco Virgil Green in free agency, but he was brought in to help in the running game. Every other tight end on the roster has little to no experience.

The Chargers will almost certainly claim one off waivers at the end of training camp. They might also sign one befofe training camp gets underway on Saturday.

Longtime Charger and future Hall of Famer Antonio Gates is actively negotiating with the Chargers, according to his agent, Tom Condon.

Agent Tom Condon told @SiriusXMNFL that he's hopeful client @AntonioGates85 can strike a deal to return to the @Chargers. Tom said he's actively negotiating with LAC executive Ed McGuire

— Alex Marvez (@alexmarvez) July 25, 2018

Gates may turn 38 years old, but he might be the best candidate out there. He knows the system, has an incredible rapport with quarterback Philip Rivers and showed he had a little left in the tank after filling in for an injured Henry for the last two games of the 2017 season.

Not only that, but the Chargers recently cut 2016 seventh-round guard Donavon Clark. Clark had flashed some potential in his first few preseason games, but he suffered serious injuries in which resulted in him being placed on injured reserve in both seasons. But his release opened up a spot on the roster, which makes this story a bit more interesting.

We’re not going to get the Gates of old, but if signed, he’d be the team’s best pass-catching tight end. It wouldn’t hurt to still add one down the road, but adding Gates gives the team some much-needed depth at tight end.