COSTA MESA, Calif. (AP) -- Tight end Antonio Gates will not return to the Los Angeles Chargers, ending the 15-year tenure of the most prolific pass-catcher in franchise history.
Chargers general manager Tom Telesco confirmed the team's decision Friday night after the second day of the NFL draft.
The Chargers had waited to make any announcement on Gates' future because they weren't sure whether he intended to attempt to join another team for a 16th NFL season this fall. Gates has spent his entire career with the Chargers, who signed him as an undrafted free agent in 2003.
Gates has caught 927 passes for 11,508 yards and 114 touchdowns - all Chargers records. He set the NFL record for TD catches by a tight end early last season.
Gates also ranks third in career receptions by a tight end behind Tony Gonzalez and Jason Witten.
FRISCO, Texas (AP) - Dallas Cowboys tight end Jason Witten plans to retire after 15 seasons and join ESPN as its lead analyst for the ''Monday Night Football'' telecast, the network reported Friday.
Witten met with owner and general manager Jerry Jones, who said no announcement was coming Friday. Jones said he had several conversations with Witten this week and indicated the franchise leader in games, catches and yards receiving hadn't made a final decision.
Jones said the Cowboys would have no other comment on Witten's future the rest of the weekend, which includes the last two days of the NFL draft on Friday and Saturday.
The news on the second day of the draft could affect Dallas' plans just a week after Witten suggested he might play until he was 40 and intended to return this coming season. Witten turns 36 early next month.
ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) - Maybe NFL teams got exhausted from scrambling to pick quarterbacks in the first round of the draft.
It took until the 76th overall slot Friday night, 44 picks after the last one, that Oklahoma State's Mason Rudolph was selected by Pittsburgh. The Steelers get a big, strong-armed, highly competitive QB - yep, sounds a lot like incumbent Ben Roethlisberger, who is 36 and closing in on the end of his championship career.
''It's not Ben's job to teach me anything. It's my job to learn,'' said Rudolph, who added he dreamed of becoming a Steeler.
Pittsburgh has had little success with backups for Big Ben, with another Oklahoma product, Landry Jones, never approaching the Roethlisberger level.
When Oklahoma State played at Heinz Field last year and won 59-21, Rudolph threw for five touchdowns in the first half.
JIDDAH, Saudi Arabia (AP) - Women and children were on hand to watch World Wrestling Entertainment Inc.'s ''Greatest Royal Rumble'' in Saudi Arabia.
A previous WWE event held in the ultraconservative kingdom in 2014 was for men only. But Friday night's event in Jiddah included both women and children in attendance to watch the likes of WWE star John Cena and others.
It's all part of a series of social changes pushed by the kingdom's assertive 32-year-old Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
WWE is wildly popular across the Middle East. The organization has an Arabic website and has held events in other Gulf Arab nations.
WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. President Donald Trump is threatening to withhold support from nations who don't back the joint bid by the United States, Canada and Mexico to host the 2026 World Cup.
While FIFA has no authority to act against the North American bid over Trump's words, the world soccer body's rules of bidding note that governments can have an ''undue influence'' on the contest.
Morocco also has bid to host soccer's showcase. The FIFA Congress meets on June 13 in Moscow to select the 2026 host, and a majority of the 207 voting FIFA members is needed. They also may pick neither bid, which would lead to the host process being reopened.
Trump tweeted on Thursday: ''The U.S. has put together a STRONG bid w/ Canada & Mexico for the 2026 World Cup. It would be a shame if countries that we always support were to lobby against the U.S. bid. Why should we be supporting these countries when they don't support us (including at the United Nations)?''