The Player as a Man
Philip Rivers was married with a child while still in college.
He coped very well with having a family on top of the double indemnity of being a starting quarterback at a major football program (NC State Wolfpack), and being a full-time student (B.Sc grad). Nine children and seventeen years later, this middle-aged man is still meeting his obligations as husband and father.
Retiring from a very promising team in the Indianapolis Colts, after he proved he can still play at an elite level, is part of his commitment to family.
No. 17 walked away on his terms, not terminated. He never considered a desperate, prideful pursuit of padding his stats. On YouTube, you can watch some of his commencement addresses at universities. He humbly lists his priorities: Faith, Family and Football. He urges graduates to choose their own priorities and stick to them.
The Player as a Teammate
There is no ranking for being a terrific teammate in the HOF. But there is in life. I’ve listened to coaches and players for the last 15 years talk about Rivers as a friend and teammate. He “ranked” off the charts.
He has said in speeches and interviews that being a good teammate is his highest ideal. He said that he will miss the camaraderie and locker room culture more than the games.
He said in Indianapolis in 2020 of the widening racial divide that if our society operated with the respect and equity of an NFL locker room, America could achieve true brotherhood.
Rivers enthusiastically speaks of loving his teammates without any of the embarrassment that machismo would produce.