Get healthy, Gates!

Chargers tight end Antonio Gates is dealing with more foot problems this season.

Chargers tight end Antonio Gates is dealing with more foot problems this season.

MIKE GANTER, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:39 PM ET

TORONTO - Antonio Gates is playing, but not like the Antonio Gates most NFL watchers have come to rely on.

Past foot problems are resurfacing for Gates, who either has a tear of his plantar fascia or one in the scar tissue that was the result of past issues.

Either way, Gates is not producing at Gates-type levels.

His season-to-date totals are eight catches for 74 yards and not a trip into the end zone yet. Those stats all came in the season opener. Gates dressed for the New England game but did not play. He didn’t even dress for the win over Kansas City.

According to the San Diego Union-Tribune Gates was to see a specialist on Tuesday. He had an MRI on the foot done a week ago that showed no structural damage but Gates insists the injury remains a painful one.

The Chargers are out to a 2-1 start without him for the most part, but if they are to make any noise in the AFC this year, a healthy and productive Gates is a must.

BROADWAY JOE BLAMES RYAN

Joe Namath can still throw around opinions. Rex Ryan is now giving him a chance to throw the ball around too.

Namath, the last Jets quarterback to win a Super Bowl went on New York radio on Monday and suggested the reason the Jets got spanked the way they did in Oakland was because they weren’t prepared.

And for that he pointed the finger straight at Ryan.

Rex, never one to shy away from a debate or even a fight, offered Namath an open door to his practice to see just what kind of preparation goes on every week.

He even suggested Namath could strap on a helmet and backup Jets starting quarterback Mark Sanchez if he thought he still had the stuff.

Normally taking on a legend is never a good idea but Namath lost a lot of creed in New York years ago when, while in a drunken stupor, he begged ESPN’s Suzy Kolber who was trying to conduct an interview for a kiss.

MORE PROBLEMS AT QB FOR COLTS

It has come to this in Indianapolis.

From Peyton Manning to Kerry Collins, to Curtis Painter and now Dan Orlovsky.

The fallout from the Manning injury just seems to get worse and worse.

If the concussion Collins suffered on Sunday night keeps him out of action this week, Painter would be the only active quarterback on the roster.

Orlovsky, who was with the Colts earlier this off-season, appears to have won the battle of the also-rans as the local Fox affiliate in Indy was reporting the team had signed him.

Brodie Croyle was also brought in for a look-see but presumably lost out to Orlovsky.

Orlovsky, who was with the Colts for the entire pre-season, is familiar with the offence and there are those who believe he actually outplayed Painter before he was cut.

Painter, though, appears to have the starting job to himself for now.

NO RESPECT FOR MEGATRON

Cris Carter is either lobbying for a better job or he has something against Calvin Johnson.

The former Vikings receiver, now an ESPN analyst, was at it again Tuesday going on ESPN’s Mike and Mike show and suggesting Johnson is still not among the elite receivers in the NFL despite his league-leading six touchdowns through three games.

“I believe there’s really four elite wide receivers,” Carter said on the radio show. “That would be Greg Jennings, Roddy White, Larry Fitzgerald and Andre Johnson. Those guys separated themselves over the course of the last several years from the other receivers.

“Now, Calvin Johnson is playing the best football of his career. He’s getting single coverage now, he’s beating single coverage. He had double coverage in the red zone; him and (quarterback Matthew) Stafford have great chemistry together. He is playing at a top-five level, but before this season, he wasn’t better than those other four guys.”

How about this Cris. Why not just say Calvin Johnson is outperforming every wide receiver out there?

Maybe then people would quit questioning your motivation for spewing such drivel.


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