Tis the Season: Chargers Legends Gift Bikes to 150 Children

by Chase Thomas
(Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and that is especially true for the 150 lucky kids that San Diego Chargers legends LaDanian Tomlinson and Antonio Gates gifted away some awesome bikes for this week. When Tomlinson and Gates arrived at the school, it first looked like the two NFL legends would just be gifting two bikes, but that was not the case.

The kids loved the bikes and it was an iconic and fantastic moment and gift via the Chargers for the L.A.-area school.

Tomlinson and Gates played on the Chargers together for almost ten seasons, believe it or not. Tomlinson soared as a running back, becoming one of the most exciting and most consistent for years to come. Gates, in a way, reinvented how the NFL looks at the tight end position, as Gates may have been. A bit ahead of his time in that department considering how good he was at catching the football, which was not all that common when he first came into the league.

Chargers Legend LT

Tomlinson is remembered for his time with Gates and Phillip Rivers in San Diego. However, most folks might forget that he began his career with Drew Brees before Brees was eventually dealt to the New Orleans Saints to make room for Rivers in the starting lineup.

The duo blossomed with one another under Norv Turner. However, that eventually never led to a Super Bowl victory, even as the offenses were prolific for so many years. It never quite all came together.

Tomlinson had a bond with Brees, though. It started with them because they arrived in the league at the same time. It was natural that their pairing would make sense. Tomlinson said, “Because Drew and I came into the league together, we did everything in lockstep.”

He continued, “We worked out together, learned how to be pros and became great friends outside of the facility… On the field, I wish I could’ve played with him for my entire career…”

This was no slight at Rivers. It’s how it worked and the timelines meshed better with the two of them.

“That’s no slight to Rivers because I have the utmost respect for him, too. How could I not? But it would’ve been special to finish my career out with the guy I started it with.” It was just different. He respected both future NFL HOFers, but he just wanted to keep it with Brees for his career. He would not have been wrong, though, because Brees did go onto win a title in New Orleans after beating Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts. Either way, Tomlinson and Brees and Rivers all had great careers and times as member of the Chargers.