After 16 seasons, Philip Rivers is no longer the face of the Los Angeles Chargers franchise.
*Insert pause here*
The last time the L.A. Chargers went into a season without Philip Rivers on their roster, both Facebook and Ron Burgundy did not exist. MySpace was king, and Janet Jackson had yet to flash the Super Bowl world. There are fans of the Chargers who have gone their entire lives with only Rivers at the helm. We are all in a glass case of emotions!
From the Eli Manning debacle of the 2014 NFL Draft, Philip Rivers has been an Iron Man on and off the field. On the field, he’s started and played through torn ACL’s, bruised ribs, back injuries requiring epidural injections, and many more that we will never know about, without ever missing a single game. 235 games and counting…
Rivers has been the definition of a franchise quarterback. Throughout his entire career with the Chargers, he was dependable, talented, intelligent, a leader, and an incredible teammate. Rivers showed integrity, high character, resilience, and charisma every game, and prioritized winning over any personal achievement out there.
Philip’s Hall of Fame Resumé Speaks for Itself:
- 8 Pro Bowl nominations
- 235 consecutive starts and counting (#2 all-time)
- 59,271 passing yards (#6 all-time)
- 4,908 completions (#6 all-time)
- 397 touchdowns (#6 all-time)
- 95.2 passer rating (#7 all-time for QBs in the league +10 years)
- 8 seasons with 4000+ passing yards
- NFL Comeback Player of the Year (2013)
But there is far more to Rivers than just his football attributes and accomplishments. His childish love for the game is contagious. His relentless focus and passion are undeniable. The love and dedication he has for his family are refreshing. As a man, Philip Rivers is a role model for many, and we can all learn a thing or two about life and perspective from him.
Has Rivers made mistakes on the field? No question – who fumbles a kneel-down attempt? Is he the funniest G-rated trash talker in the NFL? Shoot yes he is! But dadgummit, nobody is going to outwork him, and every player and coach in the league respected the heck out of him for that.
The Memories Rivers Has Given us Will Last Forever
Some personal favorites include:
- The Rivers vs Cutler (Broncos) trash talk
- 2007 AFC Championship vs New England Patriots on torn ACL
- 2008 Wild Card victory against Indianapolis Colts
- 2018 Comeback win vs Chiefs in Arrowhead
- 2018 Wild Card victory vs Baltimore Ravens (sealed by Rivers galloping for the first down)
Because of how the 2019 season transpired for the Los Angeles Chargers and Philip Rivers, some fans and pundits have soured on the style that Rivers brings to the quarterback position. Some believe Rivers has lost a step and/or he no longer has the skills to compete at a high level, and that is ok! We are all entitled to our opinions.
Did Philip Rivers bring Chargers fans a Super Bowl? No, and I am sure that is among his biggest disappointments. There are certainly going to be revisionists who minimize his successes and magnify his failures. Football is a team sport, and there have been MANY Chargers regular season and playoff losses that were anything but Rivers’ fault. But, in true Rivers fashion, he never put blame on others and shouldered it all for his teammates.
It has been 14 years since the Chargers have not had the quarterback position written in stone.
The respect, admiration, love, and gratitude San Diego and Los Angeles Chargers fans have for Philip Rivers is palpable. Either through free-agency or the NFL Draft, what L.A. does next at the quarterback position remains to be seen, but the Chargers front office has some gigantic cowboy boots to fill.
#17 will most likely go on to be the starting quarterback for another NFL team (Colts or Bucs most likely). And if that team can protect him upfront, Philip will thrive. The statue style Rivers plays at the quarterback position may be fading, but his arm talent, experience, IQ, and passion for the game is still going strong.
Philip Rivers may not be on the Los Angeles Chargers in 2020, but he will always be a Charger. Although he did not get to stay in San Diego like Ron Burgundy, he will always stay classy, and forever the Chargers’ Anchorman.
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