Morning links: Gates on #NFLRank at No. 58

August, 23, 2014
8/23/14
10:30
AM ET
Good morning. Some NFL observers believe we’ve seen the best from him, but San Diego Chargers tight end Antonio Gates made t#NFLRank list at No. 58, ESPN’s ranking of the top 100 players on offense and defense.

Gates led the Chargers in targets and receptions in 2013, finishing with 77 receptions for 872 yards and four touchdowns. He played a full season last year for the first time since 2009. Even with the emergence of Ladarius Green, Gates will likely be San Diego’s most targeted tight end in 2014.

ESPN NFL Nation 49ers beat writer Paul Gutierrez reports that San Francisco head coach Jim Harbaugh says the field at Levi’s Stadium will be ready for Sunday’s game.

Bill Barnwell of Grantland examines the best position groups in NFL history, and nominates the best position groups in the league now that could compete for that title. San Diego’s tight ends group, led by Antonio Gates and Ladarius Green, makes the cut.

Kevin Acee of U-T San Diego writes that something like Levi’s Stadium in San Diego for the Chargers is far from reality.

Tom Krasovic of U-T San Diego offers five things to watch for in Sunday’s game up in San Francisco.

Ricky Henne of Chargers.com offers his keys to the San Diego-San Francisco matchup.

Jake Hefner of Bolts Beat offers some things to look for in San Diego’s contest on Sunday against San Francisco.

Matt Bowen of Bleacher Report breaks down the main running plays teams try to get to when facing a nickel defense. Philip Rivers has the ability to check at the line of scrimmage and get to these types of plays if he sees a light box (six or seven defenders up front).

In case you missed it, this story written by Tommy Tomlinson for ESPN the Magazine on former NFL quarterback Jared Lorenzen’s lifelong battle with weight might be the best thing you read today.

Eric D. Williams

ESPN San Diego Chargers reporter

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