Chargers' legend Philip Rivers nearly played his first Super Bowl vs Chiefs in 2023

This would have made Chargers fans root against the Chiefs even harder in the Super Bowl
Los Angeles Chargers v Kansas City Chiefs
Los Angeles Chargers v Kansas City Chiefs / David Eulitt/GettyImages

Despite being one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time, Philip Rivers never had the chance to play on the grandest stage as the farthest he got in his career was the AFC Championship (once). It is a shame as the Chargers were never able to put a team around him to make a run.

It looked like Rivers had a chance in 2020 when he left the Chargers as he joined a loaded Indianapolis Colts team and led them to the playoffs. However, the Colts ultimately fell in the first round and Rivers sailed off into the sunset.

Despite not playing in 2021 or 2022, Rivers' name was in the rumor mill several times. There was a point in which it looked like he might have returned for the New Orleans Saints. Now, it has become public knowledge that Rivers nearly played in his first Super Bowl in 2023 with the San Francisco 49ers.

San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan confirmed to reporters on Thursday that the team was coming up with contingencies plans at the quarterback position and that Rivers was the team's main contingency plan for the Super Bowl if they would have defeated the Philadelphia Eagles.

"He (Rivers) was prepared to. Now that's stuff we talked about throughout the whole year. We would've had to have seen how that was for the Super Bowl, but that was the plan most of the year."

Both Brock Purdy and Josh Johnson were both injured in the NFC Championship Game. Jimmy Garoppolo was in the fold to potentially return to the Super Bowl but had the 49ers advanced, the team likely would have brought in Rivers in some capacity.

Chargers fans shouldn't rule Philip Rivers returning in 2023 if a similar situation arises

It is clear that Philip Rivers is enjoying his retired life and that he is not in a rush to return to the NFL. However, the fact that there has been speculation in both of the seasons in which he has been "retired" says everything.

It is going to take the perfect situation to get Rivers away from his family to play in the NFL again but it very well could happen. The only thing that alluded Rivers in his career was the Super Bowl and if another 49ers situation happens, but they actually advance, then he could very well be the guy.

But then again, Tom Brady has also joined the club of retired quarterbacks and if such a situation arises then he will get the call before Rivers.