FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — You should not close the guide on Antonio Gates‘ NFL profession just still.
The 38-calendar year-previous limited finish, who played this time on a one particular-calendar year contract, explained he needs to return for a 17th time with the Los Angeles Chargers.
“I just do not see myself walking away with this style,” Gates explained following his team’s 41-28 decline to the New England Patriots on Sunday. “And furthermore this team. I think when you add Hunter [Henry] again, and hopefully we get Jason Verrett again — shoot, the sky’s the restrict. And I want to be a portion of it.
“But that has to be a collective choice. I are not able to just want to occur again. So we are going to see how it goes.”
This time was tiny bittersweet for Gates following the Chargers did not make him experience wished for the duration of the final offseason.
The Chargers’ brass relayed to Gates’ representation that his companies would not be essential for the 2018 time, opening up extra prospects for rising limited finish Henry.
Then Henry suffered an ACL knee injury in Might, and quickly the veteran’s companies had been essential — once again. Gates thinks the Chargers did not have to give him an ultimatum for the duration of absolutely free company in February.
“Maybe they felt I was on the brink of no matter whether or not I want to be right here or not, and they had to make decisions early on,” Gates explained. “I want to be sure to remind them that I want to occur again. I want to be portion of anything distinctive, and I think we have that right here. But which is out of my regulate in the sense where by I can only do what I can do. And we are going to see out it goes.”
Gates completed the frequent time with 28 receptions for 333 yards and two touchdowns. Against New England, Gates totaled five catches for 41 yards, together with an 8-yard reception for a rating — probably a good way to finish what appears to be a Hall of Fame profession for the previous school basketball standout at Kent State.
Gates is the Chargers’ all-time leader in receptions (960), getting yards (11,882) and landing catches (117). Gates’ and Philip Rivers‘ 90 touchdowns is the most in NFL historical past by a limited finish-quarterback tandem.
“Of training course I think I can continue to perform. Do they think I can continue to perform? That is just anything — I know [the Patriots] think I can continue to perform since they continue to keep doubling me,” Gates explained with a chuckle. “A whole lot of teams think I can continue to perform since they uncover a way to continue to double me on third down. That just continues to be to be found.
“I’ll have to sit down with the head coach and the men and women that make these selections and categorical how motivated I am to occur again even far better, as a participant and as a teammate, and hopefully they convey me again.”