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Philip Rivers: “I’d have to be taken off in a cart”

Philip Rivers

Bears quarterback Jay Cutler has been compared a lot over the last 24 hours to Philip Rivers.

The Chargers quarterback memorably left a Divisional Round game after the ’07 season with a torn MCL and ACL, but was able to play in the AFC Championship after surgery on his MCL.

Rivers mostly came to Cutler’s defense in an interview Monday, although he also admitted he’d have acted differently.

“Me personally, I’d have to have been taken off in a cart,” Rivers told Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune. “That doesn’t mean I’d be right. If they knew he couldn’t throw the ball good, he wasn’t helping anybody . . .

“I’ll never say what he should have done. I can’t even say what I would have done in the same position.  I do know I’m not coming out unless I can’t do anything, and maybe that’s how it was [for Cutler].”

Cutler said he couldn’t plant and throw on his injury, which turned out to be a Grade II MCL tear.  It’s important to note that Rivers stressed Cutler has been tough throughout his career and that Rivers felt empathy for his fellow quarterback.

Still, Rivers’ conflicted answer is unmistakable.  It helps to show why the topic of Cutler’s toughness is a complicated one that many fellow NFL players pounced on.

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74 Responses to “Philip Rivers: “I’d have to be taken off in a cart””
  1. zackd2 says: Jan 24, 2011 6:13 PM

    “It’s important to note that Rivers stressed Cutler has been tough throughout his career and that Rivers felt empathy for his fellow quarterback.”

    So why isn’t that your headline?

    Cutler was sacked 52 times this year, but yeah he’s “soft”

  2. dizzle1016 says: Jan 24, 2011 6:18 PM

    His last pass was a 4 yarder that hit the dirt. The Bears didn’t think he would be able to help the team any further. Same with Collins the Bears benched him because he couldn’t get it done.

  3. indycolt45 says: Jan 24, 2011 6:19 PM

    Would you stop sugar coating it with this Grade II Tear BS and just call it like it is: a sprain? It’s ridiculous.

  4. pervyharvin says: Jan 24, 2011 6:22 PM

    Tell him Rivers! Hell, I played HS football with a rotator cuff that was blown to hell. Sometimes my shoulder came out of socket several times in a game.Finished the season. Give me millions and I’d play with my arm ripped off. Cutler is soft.

  5. gazivicious says: Jan 24, 2011 6:22 PM

    Wait. I’m waiting for Chris Harris to “blog” about it, with his incomprehensible language skillz, to form my opinion.

  6. litemater95 says: Jan 24, 2011 6:23 PM

    Rivers had to stay out…..LT was already on the sidelines back then….

  7. bigbear12 says: Jan 24, 2011 6:26 PM

    Rivers also can have cortisone shots something that Cutler and his diabetes has trouble with.
    Rivers wouldn’t be out there without the shots.

  8. jrs2300 says: Jan 24, 2011 6:26 PM

    Their is a BIG difference between knowing you have the Tear a week before hand and having surgery and having the injury during the same game and not knowing what’s going on with your leg… I tore mine one and my leg locked up on me and I had to twist my body but keep my leg straight to unlock it and bend my knee again..

  9. jaggedmark says: Jan 24, 2011 6:27 PM

    Guarantee, at the very least, Rivers wouldn’t have checked out of the game mentally. He would have been yelling and pumping up his teammates, and working with the coaches.

  10. dirksimmons says: Jan 24, 2011 6:28 PM

    Wow. These guys who were all sitting at home are quick to judge. The man had a grade II MCL tear. That’s a 3-4 week injury. Not much he could do. And he tried to go back in. He would’ve been a statue. Want to know what a statue looks like playing quarterback against Green Bay? Watch the two series that were led by Todd Collins.

  11. cosmicduster says: Jan 24, 2011 6:29 PM

    Maybe you’ll make it to the playoffs next year to show us how it’s done Phil.

  12. dirksimmons says: Jan 24, 2011 6:29 PM

    And if you want to question something, question how the man played, not his toughness.

  13. thetooloftools says: Jan 24, 2011 6:30 PM

    Which leg was either QB throwing off of ?
    Just asking.
    I just hate seeing guys being hurt being banged on.

  14. profootballwalk says: Jan 24, 2011 6:34 PM

    First, get into the playoffs – then talk.

  15. dasmol says: Jan 24, 2011 6:38 PM

    It says a lot that Rivers would speak up for Cutler, seeing as how they hate each other.

  16. db105 says: Jan 24, 2011 6:39 PM

    The injury made Cutler less effective. In most cases it’s better to have 2nd or 3rd stringer at close to 100% than a starter at 90% or less.

  17. jimmyt32 says: Jan 24, 2011 6:39 PM

    Rivers is a tough SOB, Cutler is not.

  18. myasylum11 says: Jan 24, 2011 6:40 PM

    Do you think Brett Favre would have walked away?? Hell No! If this was a regular game, I could see… but a Championship game.

    At the same time Bears fans should be pissed anyway, for everything they gave away for this guy, and he just sucked… before the injury!

  19. jackleone says: Jan 24, 2011 6:40 PM

    And this is coming from a guy who doesn’t like Cutler. So it must mean something.

  20. myspaceyourface says: Jan 24, 2011 6:41 PM

    Good thing he doesn’t have to worry about it.

  21. VonClausewitz says: Jan 24, 2011 6:43 PM

    Rivers is a bit of a dick who has a problem with Cutler, so there is that shading his view. Funny though you didn’t hear a whole lot out of him when LT got pulled from some important games. Know what I mean?

  22. sluggerss says: Jan 24, 2011 6:45 PM

    The comparison between Rivers and Cutler is a bit unfair. When Rivers played in the AFC title game with a torn ACL, the Chargers had time to prepare. They were able to get him a special brace to keep the knee stablized, and I am going to bet they had a max protect strategy to ensure their franchise QB didnt sustain a career ending injury. Also, Rivers could rest and ice the knee all week to try to bring down the swelling. Not trying to take anything away from Rivers (what he did that day showed tremendous courage), but there was time to prepare for that.

    In Cutler’s situation, he was injured in the game, so there was nothing he or the Bears could do to prepare.

  23. hobartbaker says: Jan 24, 2011 6:45 PM

    “Rivers is down, send out the cart!”.

    “Can’t Coach, he’s the only one knows how to pull it.”.

  24. scytherius says: Jan 24, 2011 6:45 PM

    I am not qualified to judge Jay Cutler. Not at all.

    But I will say this. I’ve been watching football since the early 60s. I was at the Ice Bowl. And Phillip Rivers is one of the toughest SOBs I’ve ever seen in football.

  25. coolzog says: Jan 24, 2011 6:47 PM

    When does Cutler ever plant when he throws?

  26. hairpie says: Jan 24, 2011 6:53 PM

    didnt rivers sit during a playoff game when the backup had to play? volek or something??

  27. joetoronto says: Jan 24, 2011 6:55 PM

    myasylum11 says: Jan 24, 2011 6:40 PM

    Do you think Brett Favre would have walked away??
    ********************************************************
    None of the apologists want to answer that question.

    That would end their argument.

  28. cornellsteelers says: Jan 24, 2011 6:56 PM

    Well, I’m glad the expert on winning big playoff games finally chimed in. Oh, wait…

  29. dixon29 says: Jan 24, 2011 6:59 PM

    Rivers is such a piece of garbage. He has no idea the pain that Cutler was in. Maybe if Rivers got his team to the playoffs we could have found out how much heart Rivers has but… the Chargers couldn’t hack it.

  30. coolzog says: Jan 24, 2011 7:01 PM

    “Rivers also can have cortisone shots something that Cutler and his diabetes has trouble with.
    Rivers wouldn’t be out there without the shots.”

    Cortisone does nothing for pain, all it does is reduce inflammation ,which usually would not become a problem for several hours after an injury like this. So your argument pretty much makes no sense. I doubt that Cutler has to worry about his blood sugar getting too high when he playing in a game either. Exercise has a tendency to, you know, reduce blood sugar…

  31. silkyjohnson937 says: Jan 24, 2011 7:10 PM

    Lets say the bears were up 14-0 would the bears be ok with cutler saying his mangina hurts and just sittin on the sidelines or would they have encouraged him to get his panties out of a bunch and get out there?

  32. mrplow3 says: Jan 24, 2011 7:13 PM

    Stop quoting the 52 sacks stat.

    David Carr wipes his arse with that number and you don’t see anyone calling him tough, just terrible.

  33. vanderwerf says: Jan 24, 2011 7:14 PM

    Rivers it the man you follow when you want to win a war.

    Cutler is the guy crying on the stair case.

  34. JSpicoli says: Jan 24, 2011 7:14 PM

    Rivers would still be able to carry on an argument with some lady in the 10th row with a full dislocation.

  35. cytofed says: Jan 24, 2011 7:16 PM

    This is the only guy I can remembered in recent memories that can have an opinion on this situation. The league need to find more Phillips Rivers clone when I come to passion for the game. Unfortunately for the raiders they passed on this guy and ended up with 300000 pound of Jbust 3 years later.

  36. rwallack says: Jan 24, 2011 7:30 PM

    People are blowing this up to be something that it’s not. Saying cutler is soft because he didn’t go back in and wasn’t balling his eyes out on the sidelines simply is not justified. Dude tore his MCL and at the moment it’s very difficult injury to go back out there. (And people with diabetes aren’t recommended to take cortisone shots) Bears fan should be happy that cutler didn’t go back in, because truth is he probably would’ve done worse than Hanie. (Now if only the Bears put Hanie in before Collins, maybe things would have turned out differently)

  37. sc2115 says: Jan 24, 2011 7:32 PM

    Rivers is a bit of a dick who has a problem with Cutler, so there is that shading his view.

    Except that Cutler is the dick, not Rivers. And despite PFTs inflammatory headline, Rivers was STICKING UP for Cutler.

  38. discosucs2005 says: Jan 24, 2011 7:32 PM

    I’m getting really sick of a bunch of people talking about how they would have played through this injury. How arrogant do you have to be to tell another guy he should have played through an injury? I’m not a Cutler fan, or a Bears fan , but I do take solace in the fact that most of the people that have been quick to criticize Cutler, were watching him and his team in the NFCCG from their couches.

  39. myasylum11 says: Jan 24, 2011 7:33 PM

    He didn’t seem like he was in a lot of pain to me! I mean the dude was hanging around the sidelines eating Cheetos or some crap?

  40. sc2115 says: Jan 24, 2011 7:33 PM

    Rivers is such a piece of garbage. He has no idea the pain that Cutler was in. Maybe if Rivers got his team to the playoffs we could have found out how much heart Rivers has but… the Chargers couldn’t hack it.

    Playoff appearances by Rivers: 4
    By Cutler: 1

    Regardless, Rivers said that he didn’t know what Cutler was feelings, and he supported him and felt bad for him. Classic PFT to twist the story in order to make an inflammatory headline.

  41. laxer37 says: Jan 24, 2011 7:36 PM

    I find it hard to believe that any athlete tough enough to make it to the NFL would check out if they thought they could still play.

    On the other hand, NBA players quit all the time, refusing to go back in when the only injury is to their ego. Somehow this is deemed acceptable and is overlooked in that sport.

  42. sc2115 says: Jan 24, 2011 7:38 PM

    Do you think Brett Favre would have walked away??

    No, he would have stayed to throw 3 more picks.

    But in fact he left games hurt several times this year, so yes, he would have left if he was hurt.

  43. tecmobowl34 says: Jan 24, 2011 7:45 PM

    jimmyt32 says: Jan 24, 2011 6:39 PM

    Rivers is a tough SOB, Cutler is not.

    **********************************************

    Such brilliant insight, how has PFT not given you your own column yet?

  44. tbd3 says: Jan 24, 2011 7:46 PM

    What a misleading title.

  45. kindbass says: Jan 24, 2011 7:46 PM

    For anyone who doesn’t know, a ligament sprain and a ligament tear are the same thing.

  46. jagerbolt says: Jan 24, 2011 7:51 PM

    Come on guys. Call Rivers a douche all you want but don’t blame for him for missing the playoffs. He couldn’t stop his special teams from playing with weapons grade stupid all season.

    I’ll never forget the look on his face during the Seahawks game when he had just scored and taken the lead (after being behind most of the game) only to watch the special teams give up yet another touchdown.

  47. draftday2004 says: Jan 24, 2011 7:53 PM

    @dixon29

    You really should check your ignorance and maybe go back and read the actual article before you go around calling other people trash.

    Because I would be glad to have more “garbage” players like Rivers on my team.

  48. 14fairways says: Jan 24, 2011 7:54 PM

    myasylum11 says: Jan 24, 2011 6:40 PM

    Do you think Brett Favre would have walked away??
    ********************************************************
    Favre didn’t get up the last time he got hit, did he? (except maybe to hit on someone else not his wife)

  49. nockinon7sdoor says: Jan 24, 2011 7:55 PM

    I notice that Mr. Roethlisberger has not chimed in on the subject as Mr. Rivers has. Maybe because Mr. Rothlisberger is too busy winning post-season games to take time out to criticize a colleague. Of course, winning playoff games is something that Mr. Rivers has little experience in accomplishing.

  50. sdb0ltz says: Jan 24, 2011 8:12 PM

    As I diehard Charger fan and Cutler hater I can sit here and destroy him with criticism… but I wont, because you haters are wrong.

    There is no way in hell any professional athelete (Aka a lifelong competitor) is going to prematurely come out of a championship game one step away from a shot at world title unless he felt he would be ineffective, physically or mentally. Its not like there was one single play where he got hurt on and didnt come back in… he did try to go on and he obviously struggled.

    It may have took more balls to come out of the game. Give the guy a break. No one deserves an injury in a championship game. I love the props Rivers is getting, he is one tough S.O.B… but lets be real here. He wasnt that effective in that game and we did end up losing.

  51. jbaxt says: Jan 24, 2011 8:12 PM

    Cry baby River’s, who didn’t even make the playoffs, is making comments on a QB in the NFC Championship game?

    That chick whines when another player even looks at her. Tell that f@g to zip it, get to the playoffs, participate, then she might be able to comment on another QB.

  52. kindbass says: Jan 24, 2011 8:20 PM

    As much as I think Roethlisberger is a giant turd, he is practically impossible to knock out of a game. That dead-leg he got against the Jets would have had me on the ground for an hour. Not to mention the broken nose (which was awesome).

  53. nitemare1 says: Jan 24, 2011 8:36 PM

    laxer37, your not tough enough to cross the street alone

  54. wahoo21 says: Jan 24, 2011 8:37 PM

    This is not a Rivers vs Cutler thread. Are they best friends… NO…do they respect each other for the position they play…hell yes.
    Everybody has a different pain thresholds and mindset and if Cutler couldn’t go then he couldn’t go…If the same had happened to Rivers would the pain threshold and mindset been different….who knows but I do know that Rivers is one tough son of a gun and he is a warrior in every sense of the word.
    To the guy that said Rivers couldn’t get his team to the playoffs….he doesn’t play special teams. The failure of the Chargers is on AJ Smith…period

    Just for the record…Rivers threw for 4710 yds
    ( lead the NFL) this year with 30 TD’s and 13 Int’s and a rating of 101.8

    Cutler threw for 3,274 yds with 23 TD’s and 16 Int’s with a rating of86.3

    Rivers was ranked #2 behind Brady while Cutler was #16
    I hope Cutler gets well and has another shot at a championship game during his career and in a perfect world it would be against Rivers

  55. ottomanismydog says: Jan 24, 2011 8:46 PM

    isn’t Cutler famiously known for not using his plant leg? that during numerous points of games he relies on his arm strength to flick the ball down field.

  56. footballcoach17 says: Jan 24, 2011 8:49 PM

    Rivers, we’ll never know what you’d do. You can’t even get to an AFC championship game! Ben, Peyton, Eli, and Brady have all won Super Bowls! What have you done? Nothing!

  57. mobil4life says: Jan 24, 2011 9:02 PM

    Who the F cares

  58. coachstram says: Jan 24, 2011 9:09 PM

    Shaddup, Rivers……you self adoring, cliche machine.

  59. rockinron2 says: Jan 24, 2011 9:09 PM

    Maybe Rivers should check history before he starts mouthing off. Rivers was injured in the playoff game against the Colts and DIDN’T RETURN even when the Chargers were losing! Billy Voleck came in and led the Chargers on a game winning drive. Rivers went to the locker room to be checked and THEN JOGGED BACK TO THE SIDELINE. He sat there and did’t go back in the game. He never had to be taken off on a cart.

    He then had a week to have a brace and a shot and play in the next playoff game, which he lost to the Patriots.

  60. rockinron2 says: Jan 24, 2011 9:14 PM

    So River’s tough guy talk is all just bull. He didn’t go back into a playoff game after jogging back to the sideline.

    http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/playoffs07/news/story?id=3194327

    “Rivers jumped to throw the ball to Sproles and landed awkwardly. He was helped onto a training table on the sideline before going to the locker room for evaluation. By the time he jogged back out of the tunnel onto the Chargers sideline, he already had been replaced by Volek.”

    No cart and he was jogging. How tough are you now Phillip?

  61. eaglesdynasty says: Jan 24, 2011 9:27 PM

    I dont think Cutler is soft but on the same note I dont think Rivers would have been on the sidelines in this situation.

    I have to believe that Cutler wanted to come back in but phyiscally couldnt, because a NFL QB HAS TO have that burning desire to help his team, specially in a NFCC game. If Cutler really did just give up (like some are suggesting but I find hard to believe) then he simply doesnt have what it takes to be a championship caliber QB in this league

  62. halftermguv says: Jan 24, 2011 9:54 PM

    Cortisone raises glucose levels therefore not recommended for diabetics. STFU you pharmacologist wanna be’s.

    I don’t like Cutler. I think his prima donna antics at Denver was despicable. But Rivers is a huge A-hole who talks a big game but flounders in an actual big game.

  63. angelosdraftboard says: Jan 24, 2011 9:54 PM

    Thanks Phil “Big Game” Rivers. Just remember the Dan Marino lifetime achievement award is waiting for you.

  64. rwallack says: Jan 24, 2011 9:59 PM

    But it is clear that Cutler is no Brett Favre or Ronnie Lott.

  65. raiderrob21 says: Jan 24, 2011 10:05 PM

    Hey Phillipe,
    We will NEVER find out what you would do in that situation cause you cant get your team in that situation! Now shut up and try and get the Sparklers JUST ONE Lombardi trophy!

  66. cosmicduster says: Jan 24, 2011 10:12 PM

    Pervy was an awesome High School football player!!!

    hahaha!!!!

  67. coolzog says: Jan 24, 2011 10:32 PM

    “Cortisone raises glucose levels therefore not recommended for diabetics. STFU you pharmacologist wanna be’s.”

    I know what it does, because I am a pharmacist. Being a diabetic is not a contraindication to using cortisone if you understand how to manage diabetes. Not only that but your argument made no sense to begin with. Cortisone wouldn’t help anyone stay in a game after an injury because it does nothing for pain, and inflammation is typically only a major problem to the functioning of the knee hours after the actual injury.

    The guy is playing in a professional sport game, I’m guessing his body + muscles are managing to use any and all excess glucose in his blood.

    Stop pretending you know what you’re talking about and stop pretending it has anything to do with playing through pain and being a tough quarterback.

  68. tbssic says: Jan 24, 2011 11:04 PM

    Cutler wasn’t getting the job done…. Bad leg,,, bad day???? Yank him….
    The second teamer wasn’t getting it done,,,, yank him..
    The 3rd teamer,,, almost,,, got it done…

  69. eaglesdynasty says: Jan 24, 2011 11:21 PM

    footballcoach17 says:
    Jan 24, 2011 8:49 PM
    “Rivers, we’ll never know what you’d do. You can’t even get to an AFC championship game! Ben, Peyton, Eli, and Brady have all won Super Bowls! What have you done? Nothing!”

    wow, I am so sick of people constantly acting like QBs win championships on their own. Everyone of the QBs you mentioned had great teams around them when they won a SB. Eli had an elite defense, offensive line and running game. Brady has the best coach in the NFL, and some great defenses when the Pats won 3 SBs. Peyton didnt manage to win a Super Bowl until he had a dominating defense led by a DPOY. Big Ben can rely on a dominating defense led by the best defensive coordinator ever.

    Has Rivers played on some great teams? of course, but the Chargers inability to win the big game so far is a failure as a team, and this season Rivers dominated while missing his top two WRs, his all pro TE for part of the season, his top running back, his pro bowl left tackle and several other positions—Rivers did all he could this season to push the Chargers into the playoffs.

    Plus he is still young with plenty of seasons left. Peyton Manning didnt win a SB until he was 31, John Elway was 36…..Rivers is 29.

    On top of that, would you really take Eli Manning over Rivers as your QB based on what the Giants did as a team in 2007??

  70. oldbyrd says: Jan 24, 2011 11:34 PM

    some people would only have been happy if Cutler risked his career. Playing against the best def. in football, any one offer odds on what might have happened if he continued. The right thing was done.

  71. mataug says: Jan 24, 2011 11:42 PM

    I think the main reason this really was blown into a controversy was Cutler’s general appearance of looking aloof and disinterested in the game.

    If the camera catches shots of him constantly trying to help out Collins or Hanie, the ‘perception’ (I loved the comments made by Harris in the morning) would be much different.

  72. someonestolesociofan says: Jan 25, 2011 1:03 AM

    Hey Rivers, you have to GET your team to a championship game before you can go blowing steam about being taken off in a cart FROM a championship game.

    That is pathetic.

  73. richm2256 says: Jan 25, 2011 10:13 AM

    People keep missing the point about Jay Cutler on Sunday ……

    It isn’t about whether he was “soft” or not (and he definitely WAS “soft” compared to the annals of NFL history)……..

    The point was that up until the injury that he can’t remember getting, Jay Cutler SUCKED.

    THAT is what he should be vilified for.

  74. CKL says: Jan 25, 2011 11:53 AM

    footballcoach17 says:
    Jan 24, 2011 8:49 PM
    “Rivers, we’ll never know what you’d do. You can’t even get to an AFC championship game!
    __________________________________
    The Chargers played the Pats in the 07 AFCC dude. So he already has.
    I’m a Pats fan, I remember. :D

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