LA Chargers News

Philip Rivers prepares for victory against old rival

By John Wozniak
CARSON, CA - NOVEMBER 19: Philip Rivers #17 of the Los Angeles Chargers looks on during the NFL game against the Buffalo Bills at the StubHub Center on November 19, 2017 in Carson, California. (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
CARSON, CA - NOVEMBER 19: Philip Rivers #17 of the Los Angeles Chargers looks on during the NFL game against the Buffalo Bills at the StubHub Center on November 19, 2017 in Carson, California. (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
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Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers prepares to compete against an old rival.

The Chargers face tough assignments heading into the backstretch of the season. Three of the Chargers’ remaining games come on the road, in Pittsburgh, Kansas City and Denver. The Week 13 game against the 7-3-1 Pittsburgh Steelers is the first big test to overcome.

At 8-3, the Chargers are primed for a playoff spot. Coach Anthony Lynn has had his share of injury concerns. No sooner did the Bolts receive a boost with the return of Joey Bosa they had to endure a Melvin Gordon injury scare. It’s the time of year where a minor injury could finish a player’s season.

Rivers has been dominating the headlines for the right reasons but he must prepare for Sunday’s game knowing that his go to running back is listed as out. Rivers will walk out into Heinz Field to face a familiar face in Ben Roethlisberger.

Comparing two veterans from the 2004 draft class

Rivers career stats

Games 207 – Total Passing yards 53,467 – Touchdowns 368 – Interceptions 172

Current Quarterback Rating 115.7

Rivers is preparing to start his 204th consecutive game for the Chargers.  Rivers was the fourth overall draft pick but he had to wait until the 2006 season to establish himself as the Chargers’ starter.

It’s plausible to suggest the Chargers will retire number 17 once their all-time passing leader retires. In the Week 12 rout against the Arizona Cardinals, Rivers made league history going 25-of-25.

Rivers reflected on his league passing record via chargers.com

“I didn’t know it was 25 in a row. I did know that we hadn’t missed, but I didn’t know where it was…. It was an efficient day, to say the least. There were so many guys today who were making the catches; the guys protecting. A lot goes into completing the ball, more than just me throwing it. It was a fun day, to say the least.”

Brett Favre gave his take on Rivers, via twitter.

Tell 'em, @BrettFavre. pic.twitter.com/oeLuo3rtiJ

— Los Angeles Chargers (@Chargers) November 28, 2018

Roethlisberger career stats

Games 209 – Total Passing yards 54,729 – Touchdowns 353 – Interceptions 186

Current Quarterback Rating 95.9

Roethlisberger is a similar quarterback to Rivers. Big Ben was the 11th overall draft pick but No.7 didn’t have to wait until 2006 to establish himself as the Steelers’ franchise quarterback.

Roethlisberger may not have broken any passing accuracy records for a single game, but he probably won’t mind, he‘s got two Super Bowl rings. Le’Veon Bell may be ineligible to play but Roethlisberger still has plenty of weapons at his disposal.

Most games with 450+ passing yards in NFL history:1️⃣ Ben Roethlisberger (6)2️⃣ Dan Marino (4)3️⃣ Drew Brees, Peyton Manning (3) pic.twitter.com/DLD7k1nJGM

— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) November 28, 2018

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Roethlisberger addressed the media ahead of Sunday night’s showdown, via steelers.com

“They’re (Chargers) an all-around good defense. top 10 against the pass. Top 10 against the run. Top 10 overall. I think any time you talk about good defenses you start with pass rush, and they have two really good ends who get after the quarterback.”

Comparisons between Rivers and Roethlisberger are clear and their numbers are very similar. Mobility isn‘t a strong asset for either quarterback. Strengths lie in their ability to take hits and make plays and lead at the line of scrimmage. Seldom do you see Rivers or Roethlisberger unhinged on the field, but they have had their problems in 2018 against the Denver Broncos.

There won‘t be too many more opportunities for the elite quarterbacks to go head-to-head. Sunday night‘s game promises to be an intriguing rivalry between two Super Bowl hopefuls.

Can Rivers lead the Bolts to victory? It‘s an exciting time in the National Football League.

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