The Chargers have had another awful season this year with their playoff hopes disappearing a few weeks ago. Despite that being the case, San Diego has played well over the last three weeks or so with two wins in the last three games over the Pittsburgh Steelers and New York Jets.
Coming into Week 17, the Chargers will face-off against the division rival Oakland Raiders with Gates likely to be Philip Rivers’ favorite target all day long. Although Gates hasn’t had his best season with only 523 yards and six touchdowns, expect him to pad his stats a bit against the Raiders’ defense.
#2 Jason Witten, Dallas Cowboys
The Cowboys are headed into a showdown with the Washington Redskins for the NFC East division title. With a loss, Dallas is done for the year, but a win start another season in the playoffs.
Witten may only have a two touchdowns on the season thus far, but the perennial Pro Bowler is getting it done with the receiving yards category with 983 coming into this game. Expect Tony Romo to keep going to his favorite target in the passing game on Sunday.
#3 Greg Olsen, Carolina Panthers
This season has been an absolute disaster for the Panthers after such a promising one last season. Despite the pitiful 6-9 record coming into this matchup with the New Orleans Saints, Cam Newton and company have started to turn it around with a three-game winning streak heading into their showdown with the division rival Saints.
One of Newton’s best options in the passing game as of late has been his tight end. Olsen has put up solid numbers this season and will continue to do just that against one of the worst defenses in the NFL.
Sleeper of the Week: Kyle Rudolph, Minnesota Vikings
Other Notable TEs for Week 17: Jimmy Graham (New Orleans Saints) vs. Carolina Panthers, Aaron Hernandez (New England Patriots) vs. Miami Dolphins, Owen Daniels (Houston Texans) vs. Indianapolis Colts, Tony Gonzalez (Atlanta Falcons) vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Dennis Pitta (Baltimore Ravens) vs. Cincinnati Bengals, Brandon Myers (Oakland Raiders) vs. San Diego Chargers, Jermaine Gresham (Cincinnati Bengals) vs. Baltimore Ravens