ANGST MOUNTS FOR QB RIVERS
FOXBORO, Mass. — It wasn’t the post-game situation Philip Rivers envisioned. Alas, it’s one he’s used to.
The Los Angeles Chargers quarterback did his best to control his frustrations and emotions after coming up far too short of a Super Bowl berth for the 15th time in 15 NFL seasons, following a 42-28 loss at New England that only got close in garbage time.
No one saw such a lopsided loss coming for L.A. Especially when the Chargers had won every game outside Los Angeles this season. Or, as Rivers put it:
“We won every game we got on a plane this year, except this one. So we’d done a heck of a job on the road.”
Not this time. Little went right over the first three-and-a-half quarters, in which time the Patriots ran up a 38-7 lead by scoring on every possession but one, and executing 61 offensive plays for 404 yards, which included 117 on the ground from rookie runner Sony Michel and 278 on the arm of Tom Brady.
That shows how awful the Chargers defence played. The Chargers offence answered New England’s first touchdown with a fast one of its own — a 43-yard bolt from Rivers to receiver Keenan Allen behind the Pats’ secondary — but then got stoned until the Patriots offensive tsunami finally subsided.
“They just outplayed us,” Rivers said, before pointing out to a questioner that he never lost his composure, no matter what it might have looked like.
“There was never a lack of composure. I think sometimes my demonstrative movement may look that way, but I was just poised as could be. The whole time … If you’ve watched me for 210 games, as you’d see for all 210, it served me well for the most part.”
It was when Rivers was asked how he and his teammates try to go farther into the post-season next year that, unless you’re hard-hearted, you couldn’t help but feel for the man.
“It’s tough,” the 37-year-old said. “It is emotional because I think you know how hard it is to get to January the 13th and be in a playoff game. You’re talking an eight-, nine-month deal. And to come up short again is tough.”