It’s a good sign that the San Diego Chargers and Philip Rivers are talking, but it doesn’t seem like the quarterback and the team he’s played for over the last 11 seasons have a lot of common ground going forward in their contract negotiations.
What’s keeping this deal from happening? Unclear, but it could be anything. Money, length of contract or structure (which means how much guaranteed cash is there) or what’s been hinted all through the offseason: Rivers doesn’t want to play in Los Angeles, and that is where the wind seems to be blowing towards right now.
Rivers has one more season left on his contract with the Chargers. It’s rare to see quarterback who have done so well reach that final season, but it does happen (Drew Brees a few years ago), which often results in the team using the franchise tag to give themselves the opportunity, with a deadline, to work out a long term deal. The Chargers also have veteran safety Eric Weddle on his last season of the deal, which might create a massive dilemma in about 10 or 11 months.
Rivers did have a decline last season compared to 2013, leading the league in interceptions. But the Chargers had problems around him to make it about more than just him and his ability. Rivers has been healthy his entire career with the Chargers, playing all 16 games in nine consecutive seasons, and might not want to play anywhere else if he and the Chargers don’t come to an agreement.