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Sun., Jul. 19, 2015 7:30 AM PDT
Rivers Relishes Chance to Teach Rooks
In a sea of new faces, one player stood out above the rest during the rookie portion of training camp, and not just because he was wearing a red, non-contact jersey. As one of the top quarterbacks in the NFL, Philip Rivers commands respect, and he spent a great deal of time passing on his vast knowledge of the game to his new teammates.
“It’s good to be out here with the rookies,” he said following practice at Chargers Park. “It’s different. Certainly there’s a lot more of me telling them what to do. But its’ good to be out here and be in teaching mode for a while and get things firing.”
Many of the rookies admit seeing Rivers on the field is a wakeup call that they are truly in the NFL. At the same time, they each appreciate the time he takes with them as they are constantly picking his brain.
“It’s great to be out here with him,” said rookie quarterback Jarrett Lee, who has perhaps benefited the most from having Rivers in camp this early. “He’s been around the league for a long time and I’m learning as much as I can behind him. Just even being in the film room with him is amazing. I’ve learned a ton. I go up to him and he answers every question I’ve ever asked him. Whether it’s in film or on the field, I’m very blessed to have someone like him teaching me.”
Rookies aren’t the only ones who appreciate having a guy like Rivers around. Jackie Battle, who signed with the team last week after five seasons in Kansas City, admits he too gets a bit giddy seeing number 17 under center.
“It’s cool to see him back there,” he said with a broad smile. “You have someone back there who is capable of taking you to the Super Bowl. Every time the ball is in his hands something good can happen, so I’ve really enjoyed watching him throw the last couple days.”
While he is out here to help the rookies get acclimated, Rivers admits he gains a lot from the experience as well.
“I’ve done it every year since I’ve been here,” he said. “It’s good for us quarterbacks to get in and start calling the plays again and be in the huddle. It helps us get into a good rhythm before everyone gets back. It’s different to be out here with rookies. Certainly there’s a lot more of me telling them what to do. But it’s good for me because when you have guys who have been around for a while you almost take for granted everything they do.”
Heading back to the locker room following a sharp two hour practice, Rivers reflected on his career and how he felt as a rookie.
“Time flies by. It’s definitely going fast. Eight years ago I remember being in their shoes and trying to learn from everybody, so I enjoy being here and helping them with that role. It’s one step and one day at a time for them, and they need to build one day on top of another.”
Having a teammate like Rivers around no doubt provides a solid stepping stone for these young rookies to build towards a bright future.
• A day after Roscoe Parrish fielded punts, DeAndre Presley filled that role during the special teams session of practice.
• The team ended the day with a series of red-zone drills from the 15-20 yard line.
• The Chargers do not practice tomorrow as the veterans report to camp for conditioning tests. The next practice takes place Thursday and will be the first full session of the season.
• Don’t forget to use hashtag #sdtc12 on twitter to keep up with the latest news from training camp.