Okay, first I heard that Jake Peavy told his Alabama brother, Rivers, first that he was agreeing the trade this time and that Rivers would need to man the leadership of San Diego sports franchises alone. Then reading the UT's article about Rivers needing to work on throwing to running backs as his area of weakness, I have some suggestions for Phillip since I guess he or Norv have none for himself. Admittedly I've been a Phillip skeptic for a while and he has gotten better but to say that throwing to running backs is all that he needs is ludicrous and insulting to the rest of the team that aspires to a Championship.
1. A Champion is more worried about winning than his stats. I am so sick of hearing that Rivers had the fourth highest QB efficiency rating ever last year from both Rivers and Norv. The team was 8-8 and while that was not Rivers fault primarily, he did throw costly interceptions in at least 4 games that everyone acknowledges should have been Ws. I use to hate Roethlisberger and taunted Pitt fans endlessly before our playoff loss and the Superbowl but watching his work I get it. He often throws for 150 yards and one or two TDs but he doesn't care about his statline and he does enough to win. He's willing to take a backseat to the running game if that's what will win the game. While the Chargers running game and defense was obviously challenged last year, I want to see that all those "this is now Phillip's team and not LT's" comments don't get to his head and that Phillip is willing to let his stats take a hit if that's the kind of game the Chargers need to win.
2. The other thing that made Roethlisberger a better quarterback than Rivers last year was third down efficiency and how he extended plays. When it is 3rd and long in 4th quarter drives, Big Ben finds a way to make plays even if he is not the world's most elusive. He wills it and shrugs off tacklers. His offensive line was terrible for most of the year. Phillip's "phonebooth" skills have gotten much better than when he first came in but what does he do once he eludes and buys extra time, he invariably throws it away. Yes, an incompletion is better than an interception but what made Ben a champion just like a Favre or Elway or Manning is that he made huge plays with the extra time. The Superbowl drives and the drives against the Chargers in the playofs were filled with Big Ben buying extra time and setting up huge plays for Santonio Holmes or Ward or Miller. Maybe Chargers receivers need work in coming back to the ball but Phillip has got to lead the league in throwing the ball away often on third down.
3. The deep ball needs to be tighter, quicker and less like a dying quail. Yes, Phillip got better at it last year but how many times has Vincent Jackson had to camp five or ten yards beyond the deepest secondary guy to wait for a Rivers quail to get to him. Yes, Vincent is 6' 4'' and has a leaping advantage as does Gates and Floyd but it is unexcusable and when he does drop a few, which he does, it is not all his fault because that has got to be one of the loneliest positions in football waiting to be decapitated because your QB's awkward throwing mechanics and athleticism. Drew Brees never had a rifle arm but got markably better as a Charger and probably had more completed bombs than anyone last year because he worked hard on his core strength (abs, quads, lower back) and sets himself to throw. Rivers has got to see this as a weakness and should, as Rivers says he did, study what Drew did to be such a true professional.