Let’s get one thing straight, Philip Rivers is the guy in San Diego. The veteran Pro Bowler looks like he is having fun playing football again for the first time in a long time. He will be the unquestioned starter in the next few years, but at the back end of his prime, and with San Diego having a young team full of talent for the distant future, it may be time for the Chargers to try to find the next Aaron Rodgers-type player who can sit back and learn for a few seasons.
The current backup, Charlie Whitehurst, is a free agent come March. As a fellow Clemson alum, I am a huge Whitehurst fan. The former Tiger beat our rival South Carolina Gamecocks four times in his college career. Whitehurst is more than serviceable as a backup, and Philip Rivers has expressed how important Whitehurst has been to Rivers own success, but his impending free agency leaves a question mark at the position.
Last year, San Diego drafted Brad Sorensen out of Southern Utah in the seventh round. Sorensen has prototypical size at 6’5” 229 pounds, and he showed some promise in the 2013 preseason. The rookie finished with 272 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions in four preseason games. I like his potential, but if Whitehurst walks, San Diego will need to find a quarterback. The depth in the draft this year is extraordinary with a plethora of B/B+ quarterbacks available after the Manziels and Bridgewaters are off the board. Hitting on one of these quarterbacks in 2014 could be exactly what the Chargers need when it is time to replace Philip Rivers.
Here is cover32’s list of the top 10 quarterbacks available in the 2014 draft…
1. Johnny Manziel (Texas A&M)
As the NFL becomes more and more of a league where quarterbacks who can run and pass are finding success, players like Manziel become more and more attractive. During the past two seasons, he showed that he has incredible ability in both areas. That’s what is attractive to teams; Manziel is the ultimate playmaker. He’s also a winner, someone who just exudes confidence. But that’s also where he gets into trouble, as some teams may be scared off by his repeated off-the-field antics.
2. Blake Bortles (Central Florida)
Bortles is moving up the draft charts, with some analysts having him going as high as No. 1 overall to Houston. Why is the UCF star leaping over Manziel and Bridgewater? Mainly, it’s because he looks more like a classic NFL quarterback than those two. At 6-foot-3 and 230 pounds, he seems better suited for the wear and tear of a 16-game season. But that stature doesn’t make up for his inability to make all throws, especially with accuracy, and play consistently.