From CBS Sportsline
f Antonio Gates is suspended, what’s the Fantasy impact?
Antonio Gates has been given an ultimatum by the Chargers to either show up or be put on the Roster Exempt List, which means he would be suspended for three weeks from the day he reports to camp. The deadline is Saturday, Aug. 20. If he shows up, that’s a good indication he’s ready to renegotiate his contract on the Chargers’ terms and practice for the regular season; if he doesn’t show, it could mean a rough start for the Chargers, and particularly Drew Brees.
We watched Brees’ first preseason game and frankly he needs Gates to make life a lot easier. Without him, Brees’ Fantasy value drops him to a pretty good No. 3 QB. Receivers like Keenan McCardell and Eric Parker would also suffer if Gates missed camp since the pass coverage would be geared more towards them. The holdout doesn’t affect LaDainian Tomlinson as much since he’s expected to take up 35 to 40 percent of the Chargers’ plays anyway.
Finally, if Gates does miss time, it’s going to make an impact in Fantasy drafts between now and the season. Gates shouldn’t be picked until after TEs like Jason Witten, Alge Crumpler and Jeremy Shockey go off the board. If you do have Gates on your roster, you need to acquire a tight end as insurance for the first three weeks. At first glance, Denver’s Jeb Putzier and Matt Schobel of the Bengals are good options.