The Chargers are thinking Super Bowl in the 2009 season, and one player that is key to that type of run is tight end Antonio Gates, who finally appears healthy.
“Anything less than a Super Bowl championship, it doesn’t exist for us,” Gates said.
It was a tough year in 2008 for Gates, as the five-time Pro Bowler struggled with a foot injury after a toe ailment in the 2007 season. His production last season didn’t decline dramatically, however, as he led the Chargers in receptions (60) and touchdown catches (eight).
“It feels good, a long time coming for me,” Gates said at the Chargers’ training camp. “Just being out there and feeling good, being able to do the things I struggled with last year, it feels special to me and it feels like a special season for me.”
Philip Rivers loves to have his go-to guy back as well, and if he can be as productive as he has in the past when he was 100 percent, there’s not a doubt that the Chargers firepower is going to be much stronger in the 2009 season.
“All my answers for my injuries were answered for me in minicamp and when I came out and practiced in the OTAs,” Gates said. “That was a big step for me because I missed all of last year’s offseason workouts and training camp.”
The Chargers hope that those workouts and solid practices in training camp continue.