Rivers the Leader: My Questions for No. 17 of the Chargers

Glenn CravensContributor IMay 12, 2009

PITTSBURGH - JANUARY 11:  Philip Rivers #17 of the San Diego Chargers looks on from the sidelines against the Pittsburgh Steelers during their AFC Divisional Playoff Game on January 11, 2009 at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Steelers won 35-24. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

Philip Rivers is one of the main faces on the San Diego Chargers. Most noted for being a part of the Eli Manning trade, Rivers has continued to show improvement and has flourished.

Despite an 8-8 record last season, and the team being down statistically in a lot of important categories, Rivers' numbers rose. He had a 105.5 quarterback rating in 2008, the first time he cracked 100 since his rookie season in 2004, where he only played sparingly.

Rivers also amassed more than 4,000 yards passing, while finishing with a 65.3 completion percentage.

With the team celebrating its 50th anniversary, quarterbacks of past San Diego lore are likely going to be brought up throughout the season as the team reminisces about where they have been.

With that in mind, here's a list of questions I'd like to ask Rivers if given the time to do so:

1. Last year you had, statistically, your best season as a quarterback. What do you think you have to improve on to have an even better season?

2. Do you believe you have to shoulder the majority of the offense this season, or are you willing to take a back seat while the two running backs try to run over everyone?

3. You have to go back to Pittsburgh again. Last time you all went, it didn't go in your favor. What do you have to do this time to break through and win?

4. To follow up on the Pittsburgh question, the conditions at Heinz Field weren't exactly the greatest. You haven't had to play too many games in sleet or snow. What makes playing in that so difficult, or is it mental?

5. I'm looking at Week Nine on the schedule. You have to go to the Meadowlands to play the Giants. Is this the game where you say, "I'm going to prove that I'm better than Eli Manning?" or is this just another game on the schedule?

6. Speaking of quarterback battles, a lot of fans in the West know about the back-and-forth jabs between you and Jay Cutler. You won't get to have any of that this year because he is out of the division. Are you disappointed you won't be able to "share pleasantries" with him?

7. Do you think you're in the upper echelon of quarterbacks, because most analysts have put you in the second tier.

8. (No?) Then what do you have to do to get there? Is it by getting to the Super Bowl?

9. I can understand if you're spending all your time with the offense and the coordinators and Coach Turner, but have you been able to check out what the defense has been doing? Do you like what you're seeing?

10. I join the many analysts that will examine what you all do in the first few weeks, because in the past, the team has had slow starts. What has to change to break that trend of slow starts?

11. That Sports Illustrated poster, where your face was pasted on the cover, do you still have it?

12. Now that you've been here for a few years, you've been able to get immersed in the San Diego culture. Do you have any restaurant recommendations?


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