Gates “looks skinny,” burning cornerbacks in practice

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Relative for him, Chargers tight end Antonio Gates has struggled the past two seasons, in terms of both durability and on-field effectiveness. Gates set out in the offseason to shed weight in hopes of improving his speed and quickness.

And so far in training camp, the weight loss appears to be paying on-field dividends.

“The best thing is, he can actually run,” NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport stated on Inside Training Camp Live on Tuesday. “… He’s in shape. He looks skinny. He was burning cornerbacks left and right in practice. … He is feeling healthier now than he’s been in a couple of years.

“He is really looking like he’s primed for a big, big season.”

Following the offseason departure of Vincent Jackson, the Chargers will likely turn to Gates as their No. 1 option in the passing game. Healthy and in the best shape of his life, it’s hard not to like Gates’ chances of rediscovering elite form.

34 responses to “Gates “looks skinny,” burning cornerbacks in practice

  1. Do you really want to get skinnier to be catching passes over the middle and having the piss knocked out of you?

  2. Recent injuries may make people forget that this guy was on his way to be being not only one of the best but THE best TE in NFL history. Maybe now he’s back on track.

  3. For a very split second, thought (hoped) it would be a story about Clyde Gates. What was I thinking?

  4. Yeah, yeah, Chargers this and Chargers that, bla, bla, bla. Been hearing about them winning it all since Stan Humphries was there.

  5. Can’t give this guy a free release when he’s in tight with the line.

    Tyvon Branch will shut him down week 1 and week 17.

  6. It’s about damn time, frankly; he’s always looked a bit pudgy to me.

    But I guess when you spend the youth of your career making Pro Bowls, changing your habits can take a while…

  7. he is burning the cornerbacks left and right because the db’s suck. Superbowl express is coming off the tracks, and going to crash and burn.

  8. We’ll see how he looks when he’s getting double teamed constantly, without Jackson no one else in that receiving core scares anyone.

  9. Anybody who thinks that Malcom Floyd can’t replace, what’s his name, is a fool. Look at his numbers. Malcome floyd is a great reciever. That is if we can keep him on the field. The Chargers will do great this year on their way to another 8 and 8 season. Oh well.

  10. Let’s be real here, I’m a diehard Charger fan but also a fantasy football nut. I hope this guy makes a rebound but the fact is he’s an aging player with a bad food. Fantasy-wise he has a major red flag on him, so for anybody who thinks he’s making a big comeback, that may be the case until he’s injured, because he will get injured.

  11. No doubt the guy still has some left in the tank, but this is training camp and the rules of the new CBA handcuffs the defense. Even some of the rookies on offense are looking like superstars at this point. Let’s see what happens on game day, with pads and a defensive player who can be physical at the line of scrimmage before we start saying he is back and burning CB’s left and right.

  12. Give me the names of the corners dude…we want names! I seriously doubt he’s burning anything related to a real CB starting in the NFL

  13. Malcolm Floyd will be 31 before the season starts, he’s going into his 9th season and has all of 177 receptions in the previous 8 years, he’s also only been on the field for all 16 games ONCE in his career, if you believe that he’s all of a sudden going to step up and become the guy after showing zero sign of that in his career then you’re fooling yourself.

  14. He once was an incredible TE – and when he was running free – along with All-Pro WR Vincent Jackson – opposing secondary coaches were having palpatations all week before the game.

  15. All 32 teams have “hype” stories about players entering a new season. Denver is a prime example. Peyton Manning only took a team to a SB twice in 13 years and is coming off a major injury but they are talking multiple championships in Denver.

    The Chargers are a top 3 offense and if Gates is back to himself then they will pretty much be unstoppable.

    Eddie Royal hasn’t had a real offensive coach since Shanahan was fired after his rookie season (91 receptions). He is going to explode in this offense.

    Robert Meachem is the vertical threat the Chargers have been missing and should keep defenses honest. And oh yeah, has scored 20 TD’s in the past 3 seasons while not being targeted often because he was on a Saints team that was full of offensive weapons. He is going to be a stud in SD.

    Remember the name Ryan Mathews because you will hear it often.

    If the SD defense can get off the field on 3rd down then you will be discussing who is in the hunt for a wildcard spot behind the AFC west champion Chargers.

  16. Its definetly not good news for my team, but it is still the Chargers, the never was and never will be team in the AFC West.

  17. lanjoith says:Jul 31, 2012 5:07 PM


    AFC West champs? Sorry, bro, not with that O-line. It all starts up front. Go read my post on Gaither and the rest of the SD O-line from last Friday, I believe.

    Rivers is going to be seeing a lot of turf, and Mathews isn’t going to seeing a lot open running lanes. Your receiving corps isn’t as good as you think it is. Even if it was it won’t matter, because Rivers will never be able to get the ball to them on a consistent basis when he’s under constant pressure. It doesn’t help that Norv loves his 5 and 7 step drops. Like I said, it all starts up front.

  18. joetoronto:

    Where are you getting your facts? Gawker Media?

    Gates was injured all last season, and for more than half of the previous one. But do you know what? He was SO dominant in ’10, that in only half the season he set stats for TD’s, catches and yards that took the other top TE’s the entire year to equal.

    So, if that’s what “done” means, then, yeah, you’re a genius.

  19. So typical. Ryan Matthews just injured himself – but this time – not on the field but in a car crash – whrere he was deemed to be going too fast.

    Is this Deja Vu all over again?

    Even if he didn’t fumble – he’s like one of the older Ferraris – which were great/high performance cars – when you could keep them on the road and not have them languishing in the shop for repairs.

    And I don’t care how many free agents the Lord of NO Rings brings in – the D will still suck.

  20. Sorry the Chargers aren’t a “top 3 offense” Top 10 yes but not top 3, and that was before they lost the guy who kept defenses somewhat honest with Gates. But they did replace him with a bunch of number 3 and number 4 guys.

    I’ve watched every game Royal has played in the NFL, it’s not coaching that’s led to his downfall, he just hasn’t been very good since 08. Even in 09 when Orton was playing pretty well or in 10 when Lloyd was getting all of the defenses attention Royal was invisible offensively. Great punt returner, but a below average nfl receiver.

    As for Meachem, he was the benefactor of their being so many other weapons in NO, teams had to pick their poison and he didn’t really scare them, yes he’s caught 20 touchdowns the last 3 years (only 11 of those the last 2 years) but now he’s going to be the guy, can he deal with that? until proven otherwise he’s Alvin Harper 2.0.

  21. It’s funny that all of these detractors say that Gates won’t have Jackson to open up the field for him. I guess those HOF numbers Gates put up before Jackson was even drafted, not to mention the first 3 years of Jackson’s career when he didn’t produce much, was just an anomaly. You guys are probably right (insert sarcasm here), Gates owes his entire career to Vincent Jackson.

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