Colts: Is QB Philip Rivers already a Hall of Famer?

Colts QB Philip Rivers (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)
Colts QB Philip Rivers (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images) /

Is Colts quarterback Philip Rivers already a Hall of Famer?

The Indianapolis Colts are currently preparing for their Week 4 matchup with the Chicago Bears, who stole headlines last Sunday when they benched starting quarterback Mitchell Trubisky in favor of Nick Foles.

In poetic fashion, the move proved to be worthwhile, as Foles led a miraculous fourth quarter comeback against Atlanta to keep the Bears’ undefeated campaign alive. However, as thrilling as that victory was, it goes without saying that they will need to play much better in the first three quarters if they want to defeat the Colts, who are clearly more disciplined and better coached.

It would appear that Chicago has a ton of respect for what Indianapolis brings to the table, too, as some of their players were handing out lofty compliments during their midweek video conference with reporters on Wednesday.

Most specifically, Bears defensive lineman Roy Robertson-Harris went as far as to say that Colts quarterback Philip Rivers is “going to get a gold jacket” once his career ends, which brings up a very intriguing question: Is the 38-year-old vet already a Hall of Famer?

Generally speaking, the all-important factor in determining an NFL player’s case for Canton comes down to his playoff success. That variable works severely against Rivers, as he’s never made a Super Bowl appearances across his 17-year career, and it’s not like he’s been knocking on the door consistently, either.

The former No. 4 overall pick has been to the AFC Championship Game just once and owns more playoff losses (six) than wins (five). That record is, unfortunately, a reflection of his mediocre performance. In those games, he’s completed less than 60% of his passes and has compiled a pedestrian 84.2 passer rating.

With all of that being said, however, Rivers’ regular-season resume is one of the most esteemed of any quarterback in NFL history. Despite having a reputation for being turnover-prone, he’s the 10th-highest-rated passer (95.1) of all time and ranks sixth in both career passing yards (60,065) and touchdowns (400).

He also ranks fifth in pass completions (4,980) and ninth in completion percentage (64.8) — not to mention that he’s made the Pro Bowl eight times and has a consecutive starts streak dating all the way back to 2006, which was his first year as a starter in the NFL.

Rivers’ lack of an MVP award will dock those numbers in the eyes of his haters, but it’s not his fault he had to compete for that hardware with the likes of Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers — all of whom are future first-ballot Hall of Famers — for the entirety of his career.

A Super Bowl appearance (and win) would undoubtedly cement his case, but Rivers, at least in our eyes, already deserves to be enshrined in Canton. His status as it pertains to the all-time rankings is simply too prominent to be denied of a gold jacket.