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Nick Hardwick thinks Philip Rivers is primed for best season of his career

Philip Rivers, Malik Jackson AP

In his first year under new head coach Mike McCoy, San Diego Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers out together arguably the best season of his career.

Chargers’ center Nick Hardwick thinks Rivers can reach even loftier heights this fall.

In an interview with Mike Costa and Judson Richards on XTRA Sports 1360 in San Diego, Hardwick said he believes 2014 will be Rivers’ best.

“I can’t imagine not playing with Philip this year because I truly believe this will be the best year of his career,” Hardwick said.

It’s a high bar for Rivers to surpass. Last season, Rivers completed a career-high 69.5 percent of his passes and matched a career-high with a 105.5 passer rating. It was just the third time in his career Rivers has thrown for at least 4,400 yards and at least 30 touchdowns.

Rivers saw his passer rating dip below 90 in each of the final two seasons under prior head coach Norv Turner. Touchdowns decreased. Interceptions increased and the Chargers missed the playoffs in each of the final three seasons under Turner.

Hardwick says the new staff provided a different approach for the offense that allowed them to thrive last year. That success has him envisioning the Chargers taking another step forward this season.

“We found really good direction this year in our coaching and the offensive system that we were running,” Hardwick said. “They were able to come in and identify the personnel we had, identify our capabilities and abilities and push us in the right direction. They obviously knew they had a great mind and great quarterback in Philip and we want to use him as much as we possibly can and let his brain work on the field cause it’s completely capable.

“[Offensive coordinator] Frank Reich has said [Rivers] is the smartest guy on the field when he’s out there and he certainly is, so let him see what he’s seeing and give him flexibility and time to change to the plays he wants to change to and he can make a lot happen.”

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8 Responses to “Nick Hardwick thinks Philip Rivers is primed for best season of his career”
  1. sdnative1904 says: Apr 10, 2014 9:25 AM

    McCoy is a QB whisperer.

  2. chargersdiehard says: Apr 10, 2014 11:09 AM

    Rivers has always been good when working with mediocre talent. One year under his belt with the new system and young talent he should have a great year!

  3. brassknuckles47 says: Apr 10, 2014 11:48 AM

    I’m not yet a believer in McCoy, but I am a believer in Rivers.

  4. yaryers says: Apr 10, 2014 1:01 PM

    Oh, come one. Why is it that Rivers’ great play always gets overlooked? “Just the third time” Rivers has thrown for 4400 yards and 30 TDs. How many times have Rivers’ draft-mates done that? Exactly zero for Elisha Manning, and exactly zero for Ben Roethlisberger.

    Heck, even Tom Brady has “just” three of those seasons under his belt.

  5. terumiarai says: Apr 10, 2014 3:15 PM

    Not saying he has a bad record but he’s overlooked because…SB record:
    E. Manning 2-0
    Big Ben 2-1
    Brady 3-2
    Rivers 0-0

  6. 1sdsuperfan says: Apr 10, 2014 5:36 PM

    Phillip Rivers is constantly overlooked because he hasn’t been able to get to the Super Bowl. Not his fault, rather it is Ownership, and coaching. Telasco and McCoy are HOPEFULLY the answer to this. It should be interesting to see what happens with this Draft, and the upcoming season. Hardwick is a pretty good judge of Rivers. Lets just wait and see. I believe in This new management team of Telasco and McCoy. Gotta Keep the Faith.

  7. vtown77 says: Apr 10, 2014 6:23 PM

    Nick is right , let’s go chargers

  8. dannymac17 says: Apr 10, 2014 8:52 PM

    Rivers really looked good and was the best QB not named manning and even took him to the wire. I love his moxy and his passion for the game. Call him a crybaby, im sure he cares.

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