Fantasy football Stat Focus: A closer look at Rivers' resurgence

Friday October 4th, 2013
Before the season, Philip Rivers was just a fantasy backup. Now he's widely considered a starter.
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Rivers is throwing out of shotgun more often than ever, but no matter the formation, there's clearly an emphasis on him throwing the ball right when his right foot hits the ground in a three-step drop. On this play, it's 3rd-and-8 from the San Diego 37-yard-line. Rivers is in shotgun with three wide receivers, two of which are on the same side as the tight end. With free safety Barry Church creeping into the box, Rivers clearly has man coverage on Keenan Allen to his left. Rivers takes his drop and delivers a pass thrown to a spot where only Allen can make a play on it.

Our next play falls in the middle of San Diego's two-minute drill to end the first half. It's 2nd-and-17 at the Charger 23. Unless they pick up serious yardage on this play, they're likely to play it safe and punt, heading into the half trailing 14-10. Rivers is again in shotgun with two receivers to his left and one to his right. Gates is also lined up on the right side of the line, balancing out the formation. This time Rivers takes a five-step drop, but the ball comes out immediately upon that last foot hitting the ground.

Right here Rivers is already stepping up into the pocket to throw. Vincent Brown, the intended receiver, hasn't even gone into his break yet, much less come out of it. Still, Rivers steps up with confidence and delivers a ball that is right on target.

Like many of my brethren in the industry, I was selling Rivers this year. Thanks to a new head coach and a scheme that does not allow him to indulge one of his greatest inherent weaknesses, he's proving all of us wrong. The Rivers Resurgence is for real.

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