Chargers Off-season Outlook: Quarterback

Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

San Diego,CA- As the NFL season comes to an end….it’s time to look towards next season and look and the San Diego Chargers needs at each position heading into the off-season.

Quarterback:

The resurgence of Philip Rivers this season under new Chargers Head Coach Mike McCoy was the key reason why the Chargers were able to make their late season playoff run. During the Chargers season-closing 4-game win streak when the Chargers needed Rivers the most he was 74-110 passing (67.3% completion percentage) for 845 yards, nine touchdowns and two interceptions. The Chargers defeated the Cincinnati Bengals 27-10 and advanced to the AFC Divisional Round before falling to the Denver Broncos 24-17.

Rivers has completed a team record 378 of 544 passes this season for 4,478 yards with 32 touchdowns and 11 interceptions. River’s 32 TDs was 2nd-highest career season total and his 4,478 pass yards was 3rd-highest season total of his career. Rivers also has a completion percentage of 69.7 this season that leads all NFL Quarterbacks.

Rivers finished the year fifth in the NFL in passing yards, fourth in the NFL in passing touchdowns, and fourth in the NFL in quarterback rating. Rivers also became just the third Quarterback in NFL history to throw for 25-plus touchdown seasons for six straight seasons. Rivers also threw for over 4,000 yards for the fifth time in his career to become only the sixth Quarterback in NFL history with at least five 4,000 yard seasons.

Rivers has two years left on his deal and especially after coming off his best season as a pro, there’s no reason to believe that Rivers doesn’t have at least 2-5 more seasons left of solid football left in him.

Charlie Whitehurst was Philip Rivers’s backup all season and  didn’t throw a single pass. Whitehurst will be an unrestricted free agent this off-season. Rivers has campaigned for the return of Whitehurst and the Chargers will have to decide how much the continuity of Rivers and Whitehurst is worth when it comes to a new contract this off-season. 3rd-string quarterback Rookie Brad Sorensen was inactive each week this season for the Chargers. Sorensen, who was the Chargers seventh-round draft choice was impressive during the preseason and will be someone the Chargers hope to continue to develop for years to come.

The Chargers biggest need at quarterback this off-season is finding a solid backup who can lead this team in the event Rivers goes down with an injury. The Chargers have not had to worry about this position for years, as Rivers has been one of the most durable quarterbacks in the NFL, but as Rivers gets older the chances of him getting injured increases and the Chargers need to be prepared for this.

Chargers should look to draft a mobile quarterback in this years upcoming draft that gives the Chargers a quarterback that fits the new-generation of quarterback for the Chargers to develop behind Rivers. Some mid-round options could be Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd, Miami quarterback Stephen Morris,  Missouri quarterback James Franklin and Washington quarterback Keith Price.

Topics: San Diego Chargers

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