Get the Athlon Sports Newsletter
Where's the Philip Rivers of a year ago?
Remember when Philip Rivers did a lot with a little a season ago? Where’s that Rivers been?
Hopefully, fantasy football players (at least the one with Rivers on their rosters) will see his re-emergence Monday night in Kansas City.
The San Diego stud is currently fantasy’s 18th best quarterback with 45.14 points. He has not scored above 21 points all season long and has had two sub 10-point performances. Rivers had no single-digit games last season and was plus-21 in nine of the first 15 games.
He had two multi-interception games a season ago, he already has four this season. Rivers has thrown two picks in four games, one against Denver and only came out of a game unscathed against Miami.
Last season, Rivers was without all-world tight end Antonio Gates for six games and without No. 1 receiver Vincent Jackson for the basically the first 14 weeks. Rivers still finished as the eighth best fantasy QB with a hodge-podge of receivers and just 1,400 yards rushing from the top two backs combined.
This season, Gates was completely shutdown by New England in Week 2 and has missed three games with the lingering foot issues he’s battled with. He has 13 catches for 128 yards and one TD. Jackson has been hobbled by a hamstring and has four games under 10 fantasy points. As a result, Gates is the 34th best fantasy TE and Jackson is the 16th best WR (thanks to a 34.2-point game against the Patriots).
The Chiefs are tied for 26th in the league with 12 passing touchdowns allowed, and after allowing eight touchdowns in the first two weeks, it has given up four in the last four weeks. They are also third in the league with 11 interceptions and are 10th in the league in completion percentage allowed (57.7). In a year in which 300-yard passing games have become the norm, Kansas City has not surrendered one yet.
This will be the second meeting of the season between the AFC West rivals. In Week 3, without Gates, Rivers threw for 266 yards on 24-of-38 passing with no scores and two picks.
Gates and Jackson appear to be healthy for Monday night’s game against a resurgent Kansas City squad.
So what Rivers are we going to get?
Probably the same one we’ve seen most of the season.
The Chiefs are surging. Their defense is playing well, just ask the Raiders’ quarterbacks. Their offense, although in flux most of the season, is playing adequate enough to keep them in the game. They are at Arrowhead in prime time.
It’s doubtful that you have many better options at quarterback on your roster. You drafted Rivers high. He is healthy (according to what he says) and he still has Gates, Jackson and a pass-catching back in Ryan Mathews. You go with Rivers this week, but I’m not expecting the Rivers of old to show up this week.
I sure am hoping I’m wrong, however.
By Corby Yarbrough, @Corby_Yarbrough on Twitter