Question: How do know that national sports writers DO NOT actually watch games/players on which they report? Answer: Philip Rivers. This week, San Diego Chargers quarterback led his team back from deficits of 21-0 and 28-7 on the road in Cincinnati. The national media has suddenly become enamored of young Mr. Rivers. Of course, Rivers followed up that performance by leading a more impressive comeback at the Broncos which led to the ouster of Jake Plummer.
Let me say that I believe the Chargers have made some tremendous decisions over the past few years. The decision to pass on Vick was probably the single best decision a team has made since the Eagles passed on Ricky Williams. Remember that chorus of boos? Drew Brees is absolutely balling in New Orleans, but the Chargers don’t miss him one bit.
Check out what Rivers did in the weeks leading up to Cincinnati game: after his first game with a mere 11 passes, Rivers put an end to Marty Ball the next week with 35 passes against Tenn. Marty Ball reared its ugly head against the Ravens, but Rivers snatched the reins a week later. He rifled 37 passes against the Steelers, 39 against the 49ers, 43 against the Chiefs, 23 against the Rams, and 28 against the Browns. 10 TDs, 3 picks.
Philip Rivers has been slinging the rock. It didn’t start in Cincinnati. It’s just that this was the first game the national media decided to tune in. Rivers played in more games at QB than any other player in NCAA history – and “reporters” are still wondering about what he can do. The Chargers are a legitimate two-dimensional offense powered by the best running back in the league and a top emerging QB. This should be interesting for the next 5 to 10 years. Bottom line, sports writers don’t know any more about football than the average fan – they just have more access and watch games from the press box. Expertise is where you find it, but in order to find it, you have to watch the games.