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Chargers have contacted Antonio Gates about possible reunion

Antonio Gates, Chargers

The Los Angeles Chargers could still use some help at tight end as they’ve yet to sign a proven performer to replace the injured Hunter Henry, who’s lost for the year due to a torn ACL. That’s despite long-time tight end Antonio Gates still available after the team decided to part ways with him earlier this offseason.

However, Chargers GM Tom Telesco reveals they have at least taken a significant step toward a possible reunion with Gates.

“Obviously, Antonio would be a natural fit,” Telesco said on San Diego station 97.3 FM, via the Los Angeles Daily News. “He’s someone that we have talked to. We’ve talked to his representatives. Sometimes, it’s not just as easy as saying, ‘Hey, let’s just bring him back. Let’s go.’”

After spending all 15 years of his NFL career with the Chargers franchise, Gates was not offered a new contract by the team as his deal was allowed to expire. The Chargers have indicated they will “explore all options” to replace Henry, although star quarterback Philip Rivers has been vocal about the team bringing Gates back.

Seven-year veteran Virgil Green, who has 71 career catches for 807 yards and four touchdowns, is the only tight end currently on the Chargers who has even caught a ball during the regular season.

Gates, who turns 38 years of age next week, did not have a very good season in 2017, though. He had just 30 catches for 316 yards-both career lows. But at least he’s familiar with the Chargers’ system and is also a strong leadership presence in the locker room.