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  • Rivers runs through his first test tonight

    http://www.signonsandiego.com/sports...2chargers.html

    Exhibition chance for QB to show off skills
    By Kevin Acee
    UNION-TRIBUNE STAFF WRITER

    August 12, 2006

    The Chargers worked a pressure period the other night at practice, wherein perhaps the best front seven in football brought it.

    With Shawne Merriman and Steve Foley and Luis Castillo closing in – not at full speed but close enough for early August – Philip Rivers completed pass after pass.

    He got rid of the ball as if it were a lit firecracker. He threw seemingly right through gigantic outstretched arms, finding his receivers with his eyes and then with bull's-eye passes.

    Tonight, the Chargers host the Green Bay Packers in their exhibition opener, the first “game” with Rivers as the starter. It is now that the focus on Rivers will begin to yield a clearer picture of how he handles game-type pressure.

    He will play into the second quarter, and by the time it is finished the football-watching world might know a little more about the type of decision-maker, thrower and leader Rivers is.

    Still, let there be caution that an exhibition game is like a real game in the way a fire drill is like a real fire. Nothing will get burned tonight.

    “Obviously there is a lot of interest in what I'm going to do,” Rivers said. “I think it's more important for this offense to move the ball and get it into the end zone. At the end of the night we're still going to be 0-0. Any mistakes we make (are) going to be able to be corrected.”

    So far, there have been few of those by Rivers. Certainly, offensive coordinator Cam Cameron, quarterbacks coach John Ramsdell and Rivers have found much to critique. But given Rivers' inexperience in the NFL, he has been nothing short of excellent so far.

    “He doesn't do anything bad,” said rookie quarterback Charlie Whitehurst. “He does everything really, really good. He's a great leader. He's definitely got all the tools. He's got the mental part figured out. He thinks like a seasoned veteran out there. A.J. (Feeley) and I look at each other sometimes and say, 'Good God! This guy is smart. He can play.' ”

    Yes, the two guys competing for the backup quarterback job are at times bewildered. And it has more to do with the man in front of them than with the offense both are trying to learn.

    “I've never been around a 24-year-old 12-year vet,” said Feeley, who is entering his sixth NFL season. “He's one of those guys, his knowledge of the game is as high as anyone I've ever been around. That's not taking anything away from anyone I've been around. The guy just knows a lot. There's something different about him.”

    Rivers, in his aw-shucks Alabama-***-North Carolina way, acknowledges, “Things have been going good. Nothing spectacular.”

    See, Rivers is a coach's son, and that coach called Wednesday night.

    “I know things are going good,” Steve Rivers, a successful high school coach for three decades, told his son. “Don't relax. The minute you relax . . . ”

    Dad didn't tell son anything he didn't know already, but it was a good reminder.

    “That's kind of where I'm at,” Rivers said. “I feel upbeat about the progress. But I understand if you get to where you think you've got it, you don't got it.”

    While there are increasing reasons for the Chargers to be optimistic about Rivers' capabilities, there remains much uncertainty about who will play behind him.

    Feeley's contract was reworked in the offseason with the idea he would provide some veteran backup. But then the Chargers drafted Whitehurst in the third round, high enough to signal he is not going to kick dirt with the scout team for too long.

    “This young man is not intimidated in the least,” coach Marty Schottenheimer said of Whitehurst. “He's confident without being arrogant. He knows what he's doing. It's not going to be too big for him. He obviously has good skills. He's made good decisions.”

    As Feeley and Whitehurst have assimilated the offense this offseason, it is Whitehurst who has been more impressive. But Feeley, acquired in an October trade, has 13 NFL starts.

    Schottenheimer for some time has seemed less than enamored with Feeley's performance. But Feeley has appeared to play more confidently and knowledgeably this past week.

    “He had a good day,” was all Schottenheimer would allow after Thursday's practice.

    Given that Rivers is locked in at No. 1 but a No. 2 QB is still TBA, tonight is probably just as important for Feeley and Whitehurst as it is for Rivers.

    “It's an ongoing process,” Schottenheimer said. “The bottom line is what happens when the game is going on.”

  • #2
    I think he will do alright, he should play all the way to the third quarter i think, get him those valuable reps he needs, btw, who is ur backup qb?
    sigpic

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    • #3
      Originally posted by DawgFanatic
      I think he will do alright, he should play all the way to the third quarter i think, get him those valuable reps he needs, btw, who is ur backup qb?
      That is still undecided. Whitehurst if clearly the more talented of the two, but Feely has NFL experience. If Philip Rivers does get injured, than I believe we should put Whitehurst in, since he has the strongest arm of all the Chargers QB's, which will give LT more running space.

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      • #4
        Well, I think he'll do alright, but the biggest advantage for him throughout the regular season (and first drive or so of each pre-season game) is that he's got LT and Antonio Gates. Certainly Gates provides an excellent target when he's in trouble, and LT can both catch it from him, and carry it well forcing the defense to prepare for the run.
        RIP Darrent Williams

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        • #5
          LightingBolt, what's the feeling out in Charger nation about the switch from Brees to Rivers? If Brees hadn't been injured would he still be a Charger?

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          • #6
            I look for Rivers to be a decent QB someday.

            I really lost a lot of respect after that facemask, though.
            Go Huskers.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by LightningBolt
              That is still undecided. Whitehurst if clearly the more talented of the two, but Feely has NFL experience. If Philip Rivers does get injured, than I believe we should put Whitehurst in, since he has the strongest arm of all the Chargers QB's, which will give LT more running space.


              So.....he can throw it what.......30-40yards????

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              • #8
                I was listening to a sportstalk radio show this morning and they were actually comparing his style to Dan Marino. That may be a little extreme but he has had a couple years to learn the offense and learn from Brees so he may not do to bad. If not this season, he will be a great QB in years to come.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Hartley
                  LightingBolt, what's the feeling out in Charger nation about the switch from Brees to Rivers? If Brees hadn't been injured would he still be a Charger?

                  Most of the fans are still upset about Brees leaving. They expect Rivers to play well, but not good enough to get us to the playoffs this season. It's hard to tell what would have happened if Brees hadn't been injured. Marty Schottenheimer wanted Brees to stay despite the injury. AJ Smith really likes Philip Rivers, and would have probably traded Brees because of that. But it would have been much harder on him if Brees was healthy and he traded him, and if Rivers didn't play well.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Nick7
                    I look for Rivers to be a decent QB someday.

                    I really lost a lot of respect after that facemask, though.
                    Sometimes he lets his emotions get out of control. He's a very passionate QB. He's similar to Brett Favre and Tom Brady in that way. I'm sure he won't be doing that anymore though.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Pipes7

                      So.....he can throw it what.......30-40yards????
                      Funny. Philip Rivers can hit receivers in stride for passes that go longer than 50 yards. Whitehurst completed a 60 yard pass in training camp.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Reidman
                        I was listening to a sportstalk radio show this morning and they were actually comparing his style to Dan Marino. That may be a little extreme but he has had a couple years to learn the offense and learn from Brees so he may not do to bad. If not this season, he will be a great QB in years to come.
                        He's been compared to Dan Marino, John Elway, and Bernie Kosar by the Marty Schottenheimer and AJ Smith. Norm Chow also said that the team which drafts Rivers will win a superbowl within 3 years.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by LightningBolt
                          He's been compared to Dan Marino, John Elway, and Bernie Kosar by the Marty Schottenheimer and AJ Smith. Norm Chow also said that the team which drafts Rivers will win a superbowl within 3 years.


                          So the Chargers had better win the Super Bowl this year to make Normstradomus Chow's prophecy come true.

                          I can see the Marino and Kosar similarities, but Elway?

                          He plays similarly to Marino and Kosar and his throwing motion and release is also similar, but Elway played a completely different style of qb than the others.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Pipes7
                            So the Chargers had better win the Super Bowl this year to make Normstradomus Chow's prophecy come true.

                            I can see the Marino and Kosar similarities, but Elway?

                            He plays similarly to Marino and Kosar and his throwing motion and release is also similar, but Elway played a completely different style of qb than the others.
                            Marty compared him to Elway as far as his instincts go, not his physical abilities.

                            Scroll down to the bottom to see the Elway comparison: http://www.denverpost.com/broncos/ci_4123222

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by LightningBolt
                              Marty compared him to Elway as far as his instincts go, not his physical abilities.

                              Scroll down to the bottom to see the Elway comparison: http://www.denverpost.com/broncos/ci_4123222

                              Ah... ...gotcha!

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