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Rivers' play driving Chargers fans to boos

Discussion in 'Chargers Fan Forum' started by Buttmunch, Oct 4, 2007.

  1. Buttmunch

    Buttmunch Well-Known Member

    Jul 5, 2006
    Rivers' play driving Chargers fans to boos
    New coach, new demands result in unexpected struggles

    By Kevin Acee

    October 4, 2007

    Before Philip Rivers took his first snap as a starter last season, the most beloved Chargers quarterback ever preached patience.
    Dan Fouts, his bust now in the Hall of Fame, noted it took six years for him to become comfortable in the NFL.

    “He's got a lot of booing to get through,” Fouts said with a laugh. “Give him a chance.”

    To this point, second-year quarterback Philip Rivers hasn't thrived in first-year coach Norv Turner's system.
    For more than a year, it seemed Rivers was going to make it through without such a rude indoctrination. The Chargers went 14-2 his first season as QB. He was intercepted just nine times, threw 22 touchdown passes and finished eighth in the NFL with a 92.0 passer rating.

    But now ...

    Rivers heard the derisive calls last Sunday at Qualcomm Stadium, beginning in the closing minute of the second quarter as he threw balls away during a quick field goal drive. He heard them again and again on a good number of his incomplete passes in the second half.

    At the helm of a listing ship – an offense in search of consistency and ranked 26th in the NFL – he is the object of much speculation and consternation.

    It is clear that there are more demands on Rivers this season. The “wrinkles” Norv Turner has installed have increased the complexity of the offense, which Rivers acknowledges somewhat grudgingly but denies has anything to do with his struggles.

    It is a more complicated offense – more and different routes, more options, more to see and digest.

    “But that's collectively,” Rivers said. “That's not just me.”

    LaDainian Tomlinson believes there is more risk, too.

    Down Rivers
    Through four games this season, Philip Rivers' stats haven't been as strong as they were overall last season, his first as a starter.



    2006 16 284-460 61.7 22 9 92.0

    2007 4 89-139 64.0 5 6 76.0

    Fourth quarter


    2006 16 58-88 65.9 7 1 116.6

    2007 4 20-35 57.1 1 1 73.2

    “I think Philip is definitely trying to make plays, and if you think about it, last year we protected him a lot,” Tomlinson said yesterday. “We ran the ball and we played a lot more conservative at times running the football, whereas this year we're taking chances. That's all about having Norv Turner as your head coach. You're going to take more chances, and so you may have a (few) more interceptions than you did the previous year.”

    Rivers has already been intercepted six times (against five touchdowns) in four games this season. He has had three games this year wherein his passer rating was worse than all but two of his '06 outings. After finishing as the league's best fourth-quarter passer in 2006, he is thus far 26th this season.

    Sophomore slump? Rivers has heard that, too.

    “I don't think you can evaluate that over a three-game span,” Rivers said yesterday, limiting his scope to the Chargers' three-game losing streak.

    He takes responsibility for his mistakes – and even the plays that aren't really his mistakes – but he believes his issue is inconsistency rather than inability.

    “To me, it becomes an issue when we can't get a first down or can't get a completion,” Rivers said. “It's been a case of a handful of turnovers that have been really bad. In the course of the game, the majority of the games, I've played good.”

    He maintains his mechanics are not different. He said he is not locking in on receivers. In fact, he appeared to check down more against Kansas City than in any of the previous games. But with a pocket that is consistently tenuous because of an offensive line that is as much to blame for Rivers' failings as he is, he doesn't have time to come back to receivers. And those receivers are not open all the time either.

    Continued.....click on link


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