QB Philip Rivers: 'We Have a Challenge Ahead of Us' vs. OAK

QB Philip Rivers addresses the media about preparing for the Raiders and his history with Oakland Head Coach Jon Gruden.

On facing Oakland this week:

“I think it's, again, because of the division. I think the Raiders, Chiefs or Broncos always carries a little more weight. Being in the division and playing twice a year, we know how much those games mean. So, yeah, it's a big game. This team got their first win last week, they could be sitting there 4-0 or 3-1. It's a good football team. So we know we have a challenge ahead of us to find a way to get one.”

On if there is a reason for his historical success against Oakland:

“I don't think so. I don't think so. Shoot, you want to, again, against those division teams, you want to play well against those, and hopefully have a good record against those guys. They've had different defenses and different coaches and things over the last 15 years, so I don't think there's anything to a certain scheme or anything like that, but hopefully we keep it going.”

On the environment of a Chargers-Raiders game:

“I think when I first got out here, I learned quickly kind of, the Chargers-Raiders game, what it meant. I think the longer you're in, it's more just because of a division opponent. I don't know that there's necessarily that Raiders hatred or anything like that. You know, in high school and college, I think it's a little different. I think Chiefs, Broncos, Raiders because of it being in the division, it is what it is. I know being both of us being in California, that probably adds to it a little bit as well, and how fans up and down the whole coast are kind of intertwined. You run into Raiders fans all over, and Chargers fans all over. So that kind of California pride of whose team is who's.”

On Raiders DE Bruce Irvin:

“Yeah, he played well against the run and the pass. He's a guy that's had a solid career in his time in Seattle and Oakland both. He's an every-down player. He's on the field. He hardly ever comes out. He can rush the passer, but he also plays the run very well. He's a productive player. 

On Raiders Head Coach Jon Gruden:

“Obviously, you saw quickly the energy that it brought nationally as well, with him getting back into coaching. We've only played against his team once, I think I've gone against his team one time. You can see kind of the energy that they kind of recreated with him being back there. Again, I don't get too much caught up in records ever really throughout the season, but especially early. It's early. We've been 1-3, and 0-4, and plenty of times we felt like we were a good football team, and I know that's what we're going to get coming in here on Sunday.”

On if he gets excited going up against an elite coach:

“Not necessarily. I always have great respect for him as a coach, and getting to visit with him numerous times when he was, you know, in the broadcast booth of those production meetings and things and just talking football. I've always enjoyed that. I respect him from afar. Got to know him a little bit like I said. I don't think personally it adds anything to it, but it will be good to look across and see him over there.”

On the quarterback sneak:

“Yeah, it's been a long time, which was good. It was good to do that. There will be more of that, maybe. It's never anything I've necessarily been against. It's just kind of the way things come up, and we've been a good short-yardage team. It's either been full backs or doing some other things. We had to look last week going into the week of prep that we felt looked good and went for it.”

On if Week 5 can be a springboard for the team like last season:

“Yeah, we need to be. I certainly think we're a totally different team than last year. We're at a different point, sitting 2-2. I think just playing a little better all the way around. A little more complementary all the way around, but certainly, you know, this is no time — like I said on Sunday — to keep going win-loss, win-loss, win-loss. So it's an opportunity for us to get our second win in a row and get above .500 and keep going.”

On his performance this season:

“You know, I feel like I've been playing pretty well, but again, like you all know it comes down to winning. So we've done it half the time thus far. So it hasn't been good enough in two games and it's been good enough in the other two. I do feel like we as an offense, and individually, I feel like I’m playing pretty well. When you look at it, we need to get better on third down, get better in the red zone. We are doing a pretty good job protecting the football. There are tons of areas to improve. Again, it’s about winning, so we need to do that more, but I do think our balance and some of the production in certain areas has been very balanced and efficient, and hopefully we can just keep getting better. Keep certain things where they are, and keep improving in some other areas, we can be great. We're not great right now, but we can be, and we've just got to keep working.”

On T Trent Scott:

“I think his quiet confidence [is something you notice]. He's a guy that comes in here as a free agent. Trent's from pretty much from the same old town there in North Alabama. Played against his high school, [but] obviously a different decade. Just his quiet confidence, his demeanor was never too big for him. You felt that. He just went about his business, just steady. Then it kind of became, you know, who is this guy? You know, a little bit. Slowly, we said that about other guys over the years. It was just, ‘Gosh, this guy has a little something to him.’ Then you look up, and he's playing a whole half of football last week and doing a nice job. If he's called on again, he'll have a whole week of preparation this week to be ready. So, yeah, he's a guy that we thought highly of from the start, and gradually he's earned that confidence and respect from his teammates. As a young player, obviously, he has tons of room to improve, as he would tell you, but it's been impressive to see him progress.”