Williams (back) could be ready for the start of training camp, ESPN's Eric D. Williams reports.
Williams was diagnosed with a mild disk herniation during his first practice of rookie minicamp, and as a result hasn't been able to take the practice field during OTAs. Head coach Anthony Lynn "hopes" Williams will be able to practice at the starting of training camp, as the 2017 first-round pick is expected to undergo extensive physical therapy prior to the start of camp. Hope doesn't always spring eternal when it comes to the Chargers' injury woes, meaning the organization could take a cautious approach with their prized No. 7 overall pick. Given the nature of the injury and the wealth of WR depth already on the roster, don't be surprised if Williams' recovery takes a bit longer than expected.
The Chargers slapped Ingram with the franchise tag in February and with each passing day it seemed less and less likely the two sides would agree to terms on a long-term deal before the July 15 deadline. However, those concerns and any speculation that Ingram could hold out of training camp were put to rest following Sunday's news. ESPN's Adam Schefter reported the contract is worth up to $66 million with $42 million guaranteed, which is likely deserved for a player who accumulated 18.5 sacks across the past two seasons and has developed into one of the most feared pass rushers in the league.
Ingram received the franchise tag during the offseason, but there was optimism within the Chargers' organization that both sides would negotiate a long-term deal before the start of training camp. That possibility is dwindling by the day, however, as Ingram and the Chargers have until July 15 to come to some sort of agreement. When healthy, the 28-year-old has developed into a standout pass rusher, recording 18.5 sacks over the last two seasons.
Williams, who was selected seventh overall by the Chargers, has been affected by the back injury since day one of OTAs. There's finally more clarity surrounding the issue, but the rookie wideout's return timetable leaves him on the sideline until at least the beginning of training camp. In the meantime, Travis Benjamin (knee) will have the opportunity for additional work behind starting receivers Keenan Allen (knee) and Tyrell Williams.
Gates could be used as more of a third down and red zone specialist, ESPN's Eric Williams reports.
Gates ended the 2016 season with more snaps than rookie TE Hunter Henry, but it finally seemed as if Father Time had caught up with the 36-year-old, as Gates struggled to explode off the line of scrimmage. That certainly came through in Gates final stat line, as the veteran TE managed to record just 538 receiving yards, his lowest figure since 2012. As a result, it's likely Henry will take over more of the starting TE role, with Gates fading into the background as more of a third down and red zone specialist. That can still make for a useful fantasy fallback, especially in the Chargers high-octane passing attack, but it appears as if the days of Gates as an elite fantasy TE are officially over.