Inside the Rivers renaissance

Philip Rivers looks like a new man at QB. Will it continue?

Updated: September 27, 2013, 12:59 PM ET
By Ron Jaworski | ESPN Insider

Philip RiversDrew Hallowell/Philadelphia Eagles/Getty ImagesBased on a number of factors, Philip Rivers is back to playing like a top-flight QB in 2013.

Last week we explored Eli Manning's struggles in the season's early stages. My diagnosis there was simple: Eli was trying to do too much, doing it under pressure, trying to shoulder too much of the load and forcing the action. The results have not been positive for Big Blue. But let's look at the flip side.

Out in San Diego, we're seeing how a similarly talented quarterback has pulled himself out of a similar situation.

The resurgence of Philip Rivers has been, in a word, remarkable. At the end of 2012, Rivers ranked 30th in the NFL in terms of Total QBR (41.5). But when I looked at the tape to assemble my summer quarterback rankings, I wasn't seeing the sort of breakdowns you'd associate with the league's 30th best quarterback. His mechanics were sound. It was his approach that was off, and he needed a little help.

Rivers and the Chargers offense had performed at such a high level for so long, the struggles he saw in both 2011 and 2012 were foreign. And the harder Rivers tried to correct them, the deeper the hole he dug for himself. In 2013, we've see the San Diego QB straighten himself out, largely with similar personnel around him. So how has Rivers turned it around?

Let's take a look.

Ron Jaworski

NFL analyst / writer
Ron Jaworski is one of the most popular and knowledgeable analysts covering the NFL today. Since joining ESPN in 1990, the former standout NFL quarterback has covered the league from virtually every angle -- sideline reporter, game-site reporter, host and both studio and game analyst. From 2007-11, Jaworski occupied one of the most coveted positions in sports as a Monday Night Football analyst.