For 16 seasons, tight end Antonio Gates exemplified greatness at his position for the San Diego Chargers. He was an eight-time Pro Bowler, caught over 100 touchdowns, and is widely considered as one of the greatest undrafted players in NFL history. Now, it's his son's turn to carry on the family legacy.
Although it took his dad until after college to truly dominate on the gridiron, Fordson wide receiver Antonio Gates Jr. is already following in his father's footsteps. He's 6-foot-3 and 185 pounds, and continues to rack up college football offers before his senior season.
It's only a matter of time before more programs find out the talent level of the Dearborn, Michigan product.
WR Antonio Gates Jr. Recruiting
Recruitment still open pic.twitter.com/uJiOYzNLP5
— AntonioGatesJr?????? (@AntoniogatesJr1) January 20, 2021
RELATED: 4-Star TE, Son of Super Bowl Champ, Signs With Dad's Rival School
Entering his final year at Fordson High School, Antonio Gates Jr. is a four-star recruit who continues to get flooded with NCAA interest, according to 247Sports.
He already has scholarship offers from Power 5 programs such as Arkansas, Boston College, Florida, Iowa State, Kentucky, Louisville, Michigan State, Maryland, Nebraska, Ole Miss, Penn State, Pittsburgh, Washington State, and West Virginia.
Other FBS schools like Buffalo, Central Michigan, Cincinnati, Coastal Carolina, Florida Atlantic, Memphis, and Southern Miss have reached out, too.
The 247Sports Crystal Ball believes that Gates Jr. will end up with the Spartans. MSU is one of the wideout's dream schools.
Very humbled and blessed to be offered by one of my dream schools Michigan state???? @MSU_Football @SeanLevyMSU @MSUFBRecruiting @CoachBlackwell_ @TheD_Zone @AllenTrieu pic.twitter.com/koyOEtkyKH
— AntonioGatesJr?????? (@AntoniogatesJr1) April 3, 2020
Antonio Gates Sr., who went to high school at Detroit Central, started his college career in East Lansing and wanted to play football for then-head coach Nick Saban, but ultimately pursued basketball.
The three-time First-Team All-Pro transferred to Eastern Michigan and ultimately ended up at Kent State before he started catching touchdowns from Philip Rivers during his Hall of Fame career with the San Diego and Los Angeles Chargers.
Could Saban call again to have his son play for the Crimson Tide in the SEC? Only time will tell.
WR Antonio Gates Jr. Highlights
Antonio Gates Jr. started his high school career at 5-foot-10 and 170 pounds, according to The Detroit News, and only caught 15 passes as a freshman.
Then, in 2019, Gates got a little bigger to rack up over 600 receiving yards and five touchdowns, according to MaxPreps. He also got some action as a defensive back, tallying three interceptions.
His 2020 highlights are quite impressive, too.
Fordson 2022 WR Antonio Gates Jr. had 3 TD?s in 4 minutes to start the 3rd qtr in their win today over Western.
He talks about the win, playing Cass Tech next week and when he will announce his commitment.@AntoniogatesJr1 @Fordsontractors @TractorFootball @KalenKing21_ pic.twitter.com/rIYJCQ1tsq
— The D Zone (@TheD_Zone) October 31, 2020
Gates Jr. has a ways to go to be a future Hall of Famer like his dad, but he's turning out to be a fine football player and will continue to get better and better throughout his career.
This post was originally published on June 9, 2020 before updating with new offers.
MORE: Hall of Famer's Son Taking 4-Star Talent to Ohio State Next Season
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