Gates secured three of five targets for 34 yards and a touchdown in Sunday's 27-20 loss to the Broncos. The 13-year veteran closed out the season on a positive note, recording his first touchdown reception since Week 12 versus the Jaguars. After a fast start to a season that began in Week 5 due to his four-game suspension for violation of the NFL's substance abuse policy, Gates dealt with hip and knee injuries that appeared to slow down his 35-year-old body for a stretch of time. He rebounded nicely with 76-and-88-yard receiving efforts in Weeks 14 and 15, respectively, before finishing out the campaign in relatively quiet fashion. Over the final two contests, Gates secured five of seven targets for 45 yards, along with his aforementioned Week 17 touchdown. Despite the late-season downturn, the former Pro Bowler appeared to show enough at various points in the season to indicate that he can still serve as a borderline-No.1 tight end, or as the savvy veteran component of a two-tight end system. Whether his playing opportunity will come with the Chargers in 2016 is currently very much in the air, as Gates heads into the offseason as an unrestricted free agent.
Gates had just two catches on two targets for 11 yards in Thursday's 23-20 overtime loss in Oakland. Dontrelle Inman, Danny Woodhead, and Malcom Floyd led the team in targets Thursday, and fellow tight end Ladarius Green even outpaced Gates with six targets. The Chargers will have a long break before the season finale next Sunday in Denver, so hopefully the veteran tight end can use that time to recharge and finish the season strong.
Gates secured six of nine targets for 88 yards in Sunday's 30-14 victory over the Dolphins. The veteran tight end came through on what could have well been the final home game for the Chargers in San Diego, posting his highest yardage total since tallying 95 yards against the Packers in Week 6. Gates also notched six receptions for the third straight week, and his 14.7 yards per catch represented his highest total in that category in 2015. The 13-year veteran figures to continue as Philip Rivers' top target over the final two games of the season.
Gates caught six passes on eight targets for 76 yards Sunday against the Chiefs. Gates led the team in catches and yards, though that didn't say much on a day when quarterback Philip Rivers threw more incompletions than completions. Gates has scored in just two games this season (though he's missed five), and he'll look to get back in the end zone in Week 15 against the Dolphins.
Gates caught six of nine targets for 50 yards in Sunday's 17-3 loss to the Broncos. Philip Rivers once again struggled to generate much offense, so Gates actually led the Chargers in receiving by a wide margin Sunday. He's scored multiple touchdowns in two separate games this season, but has been held out of the end zone in his other five contests. In any case, Gates will continue to see plenty of looks from Rivers, but the veteran TE's upside is probably capped, given the state of San Diego's offense.
|* indicates player did not play that week|
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