After starting Chargers quarterback Drew Brees went to the New Orleans Saints following the 2005 season, Rivers came off the bench to lead the Chargers to a 14-2 record in his first season as a starter.
It seems like a long time ago in San Diego when they were considered the most talented team in the NFL. The Chargers are now lacking talent at many positions, none more important than the offensive line, where Phillips has had to run for his life increasingly year after year.
Former GM A.J. Smith drained the talent pool by not re-signing his own free agents, and brought in second tier players to replace them. However, new GM Tommy Telesco knows that if the Chargers want to return to prominence, Rivers will need a better supporting cast, especially on the O-line.
“To me, Philip has enough slide and instincts in the pocket that he’s fine,” Telesco said, via Kevin Acee of utsandiego.com. “No matter if we had a mobile quarterback or a quarterback that’s a pocket guy, we need a good offensive line. It doesn’t matter if it’s Michael Vick or Philip; we need to put together an offensive line for him.”
“Money has nothing to do with it,” Telesco said. “I don’t care if it’s a rookie making $550,000, we have to get everybody better around him for that guy to succeed. It’s a problem if your quarterback goes down… We’ve got to get better.”