Philip Rivers is going through a miserable stretch as the visiting Los Angeles Chargers attempt to avoid a season sweep at the hands of the AFC West-rival Denver Broncos on Sunday. Rivers has thrown seven interceptions over the past two games - both losses - and speculation is heating up on whether he will be back with the team in 2020.
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Rivers has started 219 consecutive regular-season games -- the second-longest streak among quarterbacks in NFL history behind Brett Favre's 297 - but the soon-to-be-38-year-old is suddenly showing his age though the club is sticking with him for now. "I'm not going to entertain that right now," Chargers coach Anthony Lynn told reporters of possibly benching Rivers and promoting backup Tyrod Taylor. "I'm evaluating everything, and right now Philip Rivers is our starting quarterback. I'm not going to single one position out; I'm looking at everybody. At 4-7, everybody could be doing something better." Denver could unveil a new starting quarterback as second-round pick Drew Lock is practicing after returning from a preseason thumb injury. "We're going to up Drew's reps this week extensively in practice, see how he does with that, and then make a decision prior to the game," Broncos coach Vic Fangio told reporters Wednesday as per whether the team goes with Lock or sticks with Brandon Allen.
TV: 4:25 p.m. ET, CBS. LINE: Chargers -3 O/U: 38.5
ABOUT THE CHARGERS (4-7): Rivers has one more touchdown pass than interceptions (15 to 14) but has passed the 3,000-yard mark for the 14th consecutive season despite the recent evidence that his skills are on the decline. Safety Derwin James (foot) could be activated from injured reserve to make his season debut and the Chargers badly miss the player who had 105 tackles, 3.5 sacks and three interceptions, and made the Pro Bowl as a rookie last season. Defensive end Melvin Ingram (5.5 sacks this season) has moved into fourth place in franchise history with a career count of 47.5, passing legendary Junior Seau (47 from 1990-2002).
ABOUT THE BRONCOS (3-8): The possible move to Lock comes after Denver had 134 yards of total offense in last week's 20-3 loss to the Buffalo Bills, the club's lowest output since 1992. Second-year running back Phillip Lindsay (708 yards, five touchdowns) figures to get a lot of carries as he had a season-best 114 against the Chargers earlier this season. Outside linebacker Von Miller (six sacks) will likely be up and close with Rivers at some point Sunday as he has 16 career sacks against the Chargers.
1. The Broncos didn't allow a defensive touchdown and forced three turnovers in a 20-13 victory in Los Angeles on Oct. 6.
2. Chargers WR Keenan Allen (6,002) became the seventh player in franchise history to top 6,000 career receiving yards and needs 131 to pass sixth-place Wes Chandler (6,132 from 1981-87).
3. Denver WR Courtland Sutton (50 receptions) has caught five or more passes on six occasions this season.
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Key Players to Watch
- NeckDoub Thurs | doubtful
Flacco has been activated from the PUP list while recuperating from a disc repair surgery in his neck. He is unlikely to make his season debut Thursday against the Broncos.
- ShinOut indefinitely | I-R
Wilkinson has been ticketed for the injured reserve list due to a shin injury, and it is unknown when he will come back.
- AnkleProb Thurs | probable
Okwuegbunam has missed the past three games due to an ankle injury, but he is likely to make his season debut Thursday versus the Jets.
- HamstringQues Thurs | questionable
Harris sat out the previous game due to a hamstring injury, and it is up in the air if he will take the field against the Jets on Thursday.
- NeckProb Thurs | probable
Harris is nursing injuries to his neck and quad. It is anticipated that he will be available Thursday against the Jets.
- BackProb Thurs | probable
Jackson is battling a back injury, but he is expected to take part in Thursday's contest versus the Jets.
- WristProb Thurs | probable
Marshall is hampered by a wrist injury, but he is projected to be in Thursday's lineup versus the Jets.
- ToeDoub Thurs | doubtful
Lindsay is sidelined due to turf toe, and he is not expected to return to action against the Jets on Thursday.
Los Angeles Chargers
- HamstringQues Sun | questionable
Williams exited the last game due to a hamstring injury, and it remains to be seen if he will play Sunday against the Buccaneers.
- GroinQues Sun | questionable
Vigil was held out of the last game with a groin injury, and it is uncertain if he will take part in Sunday's showdown against the Buccaneers.
- IllnessQues Sun | questionable
Parham Jr. has sat out the previous two games due to an illness, and it is unknown if he will draw back into the lineup versus the Buccaneers on Sunday.
- KneeOut indefinitely | I-R
Ingram III is on the injured reserve list due to a knee injury, and it is unknown when the team will activate him.
- ShoulderOut indefinitely | I-R
Jones has been assigned to the injured reserve list due to a shoulder injury, and it is uncertain when the team will activate him.
- GroinQues Sun | questionable
Turner was absent from the lineup during the previous game with a groin injury, and it is undetermined if he will dress for Sunday's clash with the Buccaneers.
- QuadricepQues Sun | questionable
Jackson has missed the past two games due to an injured quad, and it is unclear if he will return Sunday against the Buccaneers.
- FaceQues Sun | questionable
Adderley left the previous game with a facial injury, and it is up in the air if he will face the Buccaneers on Sunday.