Antonio Gates passes Tony Gonzalez for all-time record
Though the LA Chargers lost their home opener to the Miami Dolphins (19-17) at the StubHub Center, tight end Antonio Gates reached tight-end immortality by passing Tony Gonzalez for the all-time record for touchdown receptions by a tight end in NFL history with 112.
With a little under four minutes left in the third quarter of the Chargers’ loss to the Dolphins, Gates sprang open in the endzone for what would be a play that would go down in NFL history, as Gates caught touchdown reception No. 112.
Quarterback Philip Rivers had tried to get Gates the score earlier in the contest, but they were unfortunately unable to connect at that point in the game. Nonetheless, the dynamic duo found a way to get together for another touchdown, solidifying Gates’ eventual place in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, OH. Look for Gates to enter the Hall as a first-ballot recipient.
The former Kent State basketball star never played college football, despite attempting to do so. Though he still has dreams of what his NBA career would have been like, the former undrafted free agent has realized an NFL dream that only so many people could ever even imagine.
Antonio Gates may go down as the best tight end in NFL history when all is said and done. When looking over his incredible career, the 15-year veteran has most of the important receiving records in the history of the Chargers franchise.
It goes without saying that Gates has certainly made an impact on the career of Rivers, and all of his teammates throughout this Cinderella-like story. Improbable doesn’t even begin to describe what his NFL journey has become, and the uber-talented Gates has earned every accolade that he has received.
The 2017 campaign may be the last season that NFL fans are graced with the presence of tight-end extraordinaire Antonio Gates, but I have a feeling that he plans on adding to his touchdown record prior to hanging up his cleats.