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Sun., Mar. 08, 2015 1:30 PM PDT
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Chargers vs. Broncos Showcases Elite NFL QBs
There is an abundance of storylines entering Sunday’s date with the Denver Broncos.
One at the forefront of discussion is the matchup between Philip Rivers and Peyton Manning.
Rivers leads the league with a 72.2 percent completion percentage, which would break Drew Brees’ NFL record 71.2 percent completion rate set in 2011. He also ranks third in league with a 106.5 passer rating, fourth in touchdowns with 19, fourth in average yards per pass with 8.38 and is tied for fifth in completions with 213. Rivers is on pace for a 4,946-yard campaign, which would mark the first time in his career that he has averaged more than 300 yards per game. His career high is 4,710 yards, which averages out to 294.4 yards per game.
Based on his familiarity with both Rivers and Chargers Head Coach Mike McCoy, Manning has a great deal of respect for the Chargers quarterback.
“We know our defense is in for a tough challenge going against Philip and their offense,” Manning said via a conference call. “They’re explosive and doing a lot of great things. From an offensive standpoint, we know we’re going to have to stay on top of our game because their offense is so explosive.”
As his former offensive coordinator in Denver last season, McCoy offered high praise for Manning after practice on Wednesday.
“The one thing about Peyton is his preparation is second to none,” McCoy said. “It’s amazing the way he prepares week in and week out. The preparation that goes into it (and) the details. He raises the bar for everyone in the organization the way he goes about his business on a daily basis.”
Rivers also lauded Manning, stating how he believes Manning may very well be the top quarterback the league has ever seen.
“I’ve always thought a heck of a lot of Peyton,” Rivers said. “It’s really an honor to be across the field leading a team against him. You’re playing in my opinion probably the best guy to ever play (quarterback). We know what we’re in for when you play a Peyton Manning led team.”
Still, for as much attention that will be paid to both of these elite passers, Rivers is quick to point out that the outcome doesn’t come down to a one-on-one battle. Instead, it comes down to both teams as a whole – the San Diego Chargers versus the Denver Broncos.
“There are 45 other guys that are going to dress that will have a heck of a lot to do with (who) wins also,” he said. “I’m sure (Manning) would tell you that as well. So we’ve got to be ready to play the Denver Broncos.”