Another year. Another year without a championship for Philip Rivers.
The Chargers quarterback turned 37 last month and is running out of time to get a ring.
“I only think I appreciated [how hard it is to win in the postseason] as the more years I’ve been in it, that’s how hard it is to get back to right where we were yesterday,” Rivers said Monday, via Ricky Henne of the team website. “It’s not just like, ‘Alright, we’ll get them next year.’ It’s like, ‘That was a heck of a task to get to where we were, winning 13 games.’ I think as long as we acknowledge that and don’t just think that it’s going to happen because I remember early in my career [in] 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, we were in. You have a shot; you have a shot; you have a shot; you have a shot; and then when that dries up a little bit, you realize how hard it was to do. It didn’t just happen.”
The Chargers drafted Manning first overall in 2004 and then traded him to the Giants for Rivers, whom the Giants selected fourth overall. The Steelers made Roethlisberger the 11th overall choice that year.
Roethlisberger ranks sixth in career passing yards (56,194), Manning seventh (55,981) and Rivers eighth (54,656). Rivers ranks sixth in career touchdowns (374), Roethlisberger seventh (363) and Manning eighth (360).
Rivers also has a higher career completion percentage (64.5), fewer interceptions (178) and a higher passer rating (95.6) than Manning or Roethlisberger. He has more regular-season victories (118) than Manning (116).
But Roethlisberger and Manning both have two Super Bowl rings. Rivers has made one AFC Championship Game, a 21-12 loss to the Patriots in 2007.
So what are Rivers’ Hall of Fame chances if he never wins a Super Bowl?
Of the 26 quarterbacks in Canton, 20 won at least one title. Only Y.A. Tittle, Fran Tarkenton, Warren Moon, Marino, Kelly and Dan Fouts got into the Hall without a championship.
But Fouts earned three All-Pro nods. Tarkenton played in three Super Bowls and won an MVP award. Kelly started four Super Bowls. Marino won an MVP award and retired holding most of the league’s major passing records. Tittle won an MVP and four times was All-Pro.
Rivers, playing in the same era as some of the greatest passers in history, has never made All-Pro, though he does have eight Pro Bowls.
His resume most closely resembles that of Moon. In 1990, Moon was offensive player of the year and earned All-Pro honors, but he never won another All-Pro, was a Pro Bowler nine times and never played in a conference championship game or a Super Bowl.
Rivers’ numbers are better than Moon’s.
Rivers could get into Canton, even without a ring, but a Super Bowl obviously would help Rivers’ candidacy and greatly improve his chances of being a first-ballot Hall of Famer.
The Chargers will enter the 2019 season as a contender, but how many more chances is Rivers going to get? His time is now.