Philip Rivers is close to being the elite QB he was from 2008-2010

By Kenny Gardner
Philip Rivers San Diego Chargers
Jake Roth-USA Today Sports

San Diego Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers was a beast from 2008-2010.  Rivers averaged 4,324 passing yards, 31 touchdowns and 11 interceptions during this time frame.

In 2008, Rivers was tied with his predecessor and current New Orleans Saints QB Drew Brees for the NFL lead with 34 touchdown passes.  Rivers also led the NFL with 4,710 passing yards in 2010.

Rivers has struggled with turnovers over the last two seasons.  Rivers had 20 interceptions in 2011 which was tied for third with Washington Redskins QB Rex Grossman.

Rivers led the NFL with 15 fumbles in 2012 and his 15 interceptions were tied for 10th with New York Giants QB Eli Manning. Despite the turnovers, Rivers’ QB rating ranked 11th in 2011 and 11th in 2012.

San Diego’s offensive line allowed the fourth most sacks in 2012, so Rivers felt pressure at times and this was a reason why he committed so many turnovers.

Vincent Jackson led San Diego in receiving yards in 2008, 2009 and 2011.  Jackson led the team in receiving yards and TD receptions in 2009 and 2011.  San Diego lost him in free agency which was a big loss.

Rivers threw for at least 25 touchdown passes from 2008-2012 while his completion percentage ranked seventh in 2011 and 2012.

I expected Rivers to have a big season in 2012 and had it not been for the turnovers, he could have been elite even with a horrible offensive line and a below average receiving core.

Rivers was tied with Manning for ninth with 26 TD passes this season and his 64.1 completion percentage in 2012 was higher than his career average which is a little under 64 percent.

Rivers does not need a great offensive line and a great receiver, but one of these would go a long way in helping him return to elite status as a QB.

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