INDIANAPOLIS —Indianapolis Colts head coach Frank Reich recently sat down with Colts.com to discuss the addition of free agent quarterback Philip Rivers, an eight-time Pro Bowler Reich had coached previously with the San Diego Chargers from 2013-15. You can catch part of that conversation above, and read the entire thing below:
What are the Colts getting in quarterback Philip Rivers?
Reich: "My experience with Philip Rivers for three years in San Diego, it was tremendous. When I think about that time, the first thing I think about when I think about Philip is as great of an individual player as he is, he's all about the team. And he makes coming to work fun, for everybody in the building. I mean, this guy's got so much juice; it just comes out of him. That's why he fits in good with this team, 'cause we've got a lot of guys like that. And then he just brings that mix of talents and gifts that you need to be an elite NFL quarterback, which he's proven over his whole career. And I got to see that first-hand for three years: a guy who has a tremendous knack for making big plays down the field. When you look at his career over 15-plus years, year in and year out this guy knows how to make plays down the field. And then he's the kind of guy who can always get you in the right play. He prepares hard — I mean, we've set a high standard here in preparation with our quarterbacks in the past, and he'll come right in and he'll take that to a whole new level. I mean, this guy is top-notch in every way."
What kind of impact can a guy like Rivers make in Indy?
Reich: "When I think about the impact that Philip will have in the locker room, again, it starts with being all about the team, but this is a guy who's got passion, who likes to have a good time, who knows how to have a good time, but his true character really comes out, his passion for football. And then he's all about family and friends. I mean, he's a family-oriented guy. And that locker room experience, that's what keeps a guy who's 38 years old still wanting to come back and continue to play; it's what happens in that locker room. That's a big part of it."
What makes Rivers specifically an ideal fit with this Colts team?
Reich: "I think there's a lot of reasons that Philip is a great fit here. First of all, just the culture in the locker room; he's a team player first. Secondly, he knows our offense. I mean, a big part of this (is) he and I and Nick Sirianni sat down together and fleshed out and worked out in those early days in San Diego; we were morphing together a little bit of what we all had been exposed to into something we thought was pretty special. So that's a great fit; schematically, he already knows the deal. And then third I think he's a great fit for this community. You know, he's a family man — him and his whole family, nine children, will be here in Indianapolis; they will embrace what the Horseshoe is all about, and more importantly, they will represent us well."
What should Colts fans know about Rivers now as their quarterback?
Reich: "I'm really excited for our fanbase to get to know Philip, as a player and as a person. We had a high standard at the quarterback position for the couple years we've been here with Andrew (Luck) and Jacoby (Brissett), and before that, obviously, with Peyton (Manning), and the list goes back even further than that. But the quality of person is important to us, and the quality of leader, and Philip is gonna bring that to the table. But then as a player, he has unique abilities. You're gonna see a good mix of vertical pass game with a get-it-out-of-your-hand-quick (ability). He knows how to work the crowd, work the game — much like a Peyton Manning did in all that no-huddle offense, that was some of our experience together when we worked together before. And then Philip just brings a passion. I mean, our fans get excited when they step into Lucas Oil and we get things rockin' and rollin', Phillip, he's the kind of player and leader who will get the crowd fired up. You'll see him on the sideline — you'll know he's on the field, just both from the way he plays, but you'll feel his presence — on the sideline, into the game — and I think the fans will feed off of that."