San Diego Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers is known almost as much for his fiery personality as he is for his quarterbacking abilities on the football field.
Rivers certainly isn’t above getting into a trash talk battle with opposing defenders after he makes a play against them. It’s the competitive nature within him.
And it’s something that Tennessee Titans defenders who have gone against him actually say livens up the game.
“I love him. I love the way he goes out there. He’s a competitive guy,” Titans defensive end Jurrell Casey said. “He’s a guy that’s gonna fight no matter what. He’s gonna get in your face He’s not afraid of one person on that field. You’ve got to love a quarterback like that. He’s definitely going to bring the fight, and you’ve got no choice but to respect a guy like that.”
Linebacker Brian Orakpo, who has seven sacks in eight games, said Rivers’ personality makes the battle on the field fun – and that it’s OK for a quarterback to talk back to those trying to bring him down.
“I love it. It brings out the competitive nature coming from another position outside the offensive line. When you’ve got your quarterback chirping, it brings out the best in you. I kind of look forward to that. He’s one of those that says, ‘That hit didn’t hurt me,’ or ‘Nice hit.’ He knows how to chirp back,” Orakpo said.
Titans linebacker Wesley Woodyard, battled Rivers’ Chargers twice a year when he was with the Denver Broncos, and was there when the whole Rivers/Jay Cutler feud was brewing several years ago.
“It’s fun, a lot of fun. It’s definitely a way to get under people’s skins and get in their heads. He’s a dying breed. It’s very rare that you come up against a quarterback that’s not afraid of anybody,” Woodyard said. “Me, as a competitor and a football player, that’s something I look forward to every Sunday. It doesn’t matter how hard you hit him, he’s going to keep on talking and keep making plays and let you know he made plays.”
Woodyard said the competitiveness that Rivers brings also has morphed into a respect factor over the years as he went against the Chargers’ QB.
“I think it’s more of a respect factor. When I first started off, he didn’t know who I was, and now we communicate with each other. ‘What’s up, Philip?’ ‘What’s up, Wes,’” Woodyard said. “It’s good that we both have that mutual respect for each other. He’s a good quarterback and I look forward to facing him.”