Michael Irvin gives advice to player he says was snubbed from Hall of Fame


Antonio Gates will have to wait at least one more year to get into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

The Chargers legend (who made most of his career in San Diego) was on the ballot for the first time, but was not one of the seven to be inducted into Canton, Ohio.

With Gates’ numbers, it is likely a matter of if, not when. Over his career, he made 955 catches for 11,841 yards and 116 touchdowns, en route to eight Pro Bowls and four First-team All-Pro selections.

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Los Angeles Chargers tight end Antonio Gates watches a replay from the sideline at StubHub Center in Carson, California, on Oct. 7, 2018. (Scott Varley/Digital First Media/Torrance Daily Breeze via Getty Images)

So, because he will probably get in, he shouldn’t harp on the fact that his arrival is delayed, says Hall of Famer Michael Irvin.

The Dallas Cowboys legend knows all about feeling snubbed.

“I didn’t get in on the first ballot,” Irvin told TMZ Sports in Las Vegas. “But, I promise you I got in on the third ballot and when I got there, and I got to that podium, straight joy was waiting on me. It didn’t even matter that I didn’t go in on the first ballot, once I got there, I just saw joy.”

Antonio Gates after touchdown

Antonio Gates of the Los Angeles Chargers celebrates after scoring a touchdown against the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium on Dec. 24, 2017, in East Rutherford, New Jersey. (Ed Mulholland/Getty Images)

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Irvin told the outlet he thought Gates was going to get in, and he deserves to be in. And although it might sting right now, Gates can allow the wait to be well worth it, says Irvin.

“Don’t let that rob you when your time comes. Don’t be so angry you didn’t get in when you wanted it that when you do get it, you can’t even appreciate it. Don’t let them steal it from you twice.”

Antonio Gates celebrating

Tight end Antonio Gates of the Los Angeles Chargers laughs during warmups for the Washington Redskins game on Dec. 10, 2017, at StubHub Center in Carson, California. (Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

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Dwight Freeney, Devin Hester, Andre Johnson, Julius Peppers, Patrick Willis, Steve McMichael and Randy Gradishar make up the 2024 Hall of Fame Class – the seven were officially announced during the NFL Honors on Thursday night.

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