Let's be real here. No other franchise QB has to put up with what Rivers does. Eli, Roethlisberger, Rodgers, Manning, Brady, and Brees all have elite supporting casts. All of them. All of them have elite supporting casts, in different ways, but elite none the less.
People love to bash Rivers, and the last 2 seasons he's had, but the question I ask is, what does he have to work with. To me, an elite QB is a QB who maximizes the group around him. And as sad as it is to say, Philip Rivers is getting the most out of what he has to work with.
I've done this before, but let's do the run down of what he has to work with.
Danario Alexander, a guy who wasn't even good enough to be on the Rams roster, is his #1 WR at the moment. Ronnie Brown, the guy who was cut by the lowly Eagles and Dolphins, is 2nd on the team in receptions. The Chargers running backs as a whole lead the league in receptions, not because they're great receivers, but because Rivers HAS to throw them the ball.
The running game, is mediocre on a good day. The Chargers have the 27th ranked rushing attack in terms of yards and the 29th in terms of yards a carry. Matthews has been a bust to this point in his career, certainly not worth trading up to 12th in the draft for. The Chargers running backs have as many fumbles as touchdowns. Seriously.
The offensive line...... The god damn offensive line, is awful. Just, bad.
So let's recap, Receivers who can't get open, Ronnie Brown being the focal point of the passing game, no running game, and an offensive line that are only rivaled by turnstiles in terms of letting people walk through them. And yet, people expect Philip Rivers to make the play-offs, with that, because you know, it's not like Tom Brady has any help.....
I didn't even mention Norv was his coach until now.
And yet some people have the audacity to say it's Rivers' fault, and that he's not an elite QB because he can't throw a 20 yard out route, throw lasers, and throws jump balls to tall receivers. Not to be specific to any one person, because a lot of people have come up with way stupider reasons than that, who make great money to talk about sports (Tony Kornheiser keeps saying Rivers "can't throw the ball anymore"). It's almost like some people aren't watching the games, or didn't watch any of the games in previous years. I wouldn't be so angry about this if the arguments against Rivers weren't so superficial and well, meaningless.
I've said this before, and I'm sure some people might think I'm over simplifying this, but I'm not. Protect Philip Rivers, and he will pick apart any defense.