“We are tremendously disappointed for our team and our fans as well as Antonio, but no more disappointed than Antonio is with himself,” the team said in a statement shortly following the announcement of the suspension.
Gates also made a statement on Twitter shortly after the announcement.
“In my 12 years in the NFL, I have taken tremendous pride in upholding the integrity of the NFL shield and all that it entails,” read part of his statement. “I have taken extreme care of my body with a holistic approach and I have never knowingly ingested a substance that was banned by the NFL.”
Gates, 35, has spent all of his 12 NFL seasons with the Chargers, who signed him as an undrafted free agent out of Kent State in 2003.
He is an eight-time Pro-Bowler and has been a first-team All Pro selection three times.
Along with that, he is the team’s all-time leader in receptions, receiving yards and receiving touchdowns.
“I’d like to express my sincere apologies to the Chargers, my teammates, coaches, fans and the league who have always supported me and expected and gotten nothing but the highest level of integrity from me,” Gates said in the back-end of his statement.
Ladarius Green, who has three career touchdowns in 34 games, is next up on the depth chart at tight end.
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