Philip Rivers completed 25-of-39 attempts on Sunday for 250 yards and three touchdowns, good for a 92.7 passer rating.
Still, he wasn’t pleased with his overall performance, calling it a day he didn’t throw the ball great.
Rivers passed John Elway, the Hall of Famer whose poster adored his walls as a kid, for the eighth-most passing yards in NFL history.
That didn’t matter much to the quarterback, who was more focused on the team’s overall play rather than individual stats.
Now, ask him about the team’s character, fighting back from a 14-0 hole early in the first quarter, followed by a fourth-quarter come-from-behind victory to even the record at 2-2?
Well, that couldn’t make Rivers any happier.
“It was just a gritty team win,” the quarterback said. “It wasn’t the best day, but at the same time, we showed some of the traits that we always talk about having – toughness, togetherness, the fight…. We found a way to win. There’s no game in the NFL that should be easier or harder than the other. They’re all hard, and we found a way to win.”
Grit is as important as it comes for a football team. As some of the older vets alluded to in the locker room, these are the types of games the Bolts often lost before the arrival of Head Coach Anthony Lynn.
“We have to find a way to win these types of games, and that’s what we did today,” said Casey Hayward. “You look at past years and we’d find a way to lose those close games. Today we did a great job of winning. It’s hard to win in this league. Sometimes, you’ve got to will yourself to win these types of games, and we did that.”
Melvin Gordon was quick to echo the same sentiment.
“We have been through so much adversity,” he said. “Being down 14 (points) is nothing to us. We have been at rock bottom (in the past). It’s only up, and we know how to respond when we go down. We never fold. We never turn the cheek. We never look back and think the game is over. We always feel like we have the players to be in the game regardless of how much someone goes up. Until that clock hits zero, we’ve got a chance.”
However, while the vets appreciated this type of victory, it wasn’t lost on the younger players, either.
They too appreciated what it takes to grind out Sunday’s win, and were quick to credit their head coach. This Chargers team has taken on the identity of their head coach, indicative in the way they scratched and clawed out a W despite not playing nearly up to their standards.
“Coach always says let’s play a four quarter game,” explained Derwin James. “He wants to see us play a complete game, and I feel like today we played a complete game as a team.”
“This is a resilient group,” added Trevor Williams. “I think we’ve shown that the last couple years with everything we’ve been through. It’s a brotherhood. Win, lose or draw, we have each other’s back.”
Thus, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that Lynn was quick to laud the team’s character to pull out a hard-fought win.
“We knew this was going to be a four quarter football game, so our guys had the mindset of playing for four quarters,” he said. “And they did. It was good to see the resilience of this football team, and how they bounce back. How they finish. I thought all three phases kicked in and made plays when we needed a play.”
View the best action shots as the Chargers defeat the San Fransisco 49ers for the annual Latino Heritage game at home.