No 4: Philip Rivers, 2013 season
This was a toss-up between Rivers’ 2013 season (9-7, advanced to the divisional round of the playoffs) and also the 2009 campaign (13-3, first-round bye but lost in the divisional round). Though the 2009 season featured more team success, Rivers’ NFL Comeback Player of the Year performance in 2013 ultimately won out.
Buoyed by 32 passing touchdowns (tied for fifth all-time in Chargers history), 4,478 passing yards (fifth all-time) and a franchise-record quarterback rating of 105.5, this was one of Rivers’ best campaigns. Coming off a combined 35 interceptions the two previous seasons, many around the NFL began to wonder if the NC State product had his best years behind him.
That all changed in 2013 under new head coach Mike McCoy and a revamped offensive system. Thanks to a more balanced offensive attack along with an improved defense, Rivers was able to make more plays and not hurry as much from the pocket.
Though the team mark of 9-7 isn’t going to blow anyone’s mind, the Chargers did make the postseason that year (following a dramatic season finale) and were able to knock off the Bengals in the Wild Card round of the playoffs, 27-10. The gunslinger also led all quarterbacks in the league with a 49.4% third-down conversion rate when passing. This year also happened to be McCoy's best season in San Diego as it was all downhill for the Bolts until the next entry in our list.