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Rival Report 10/5: Chargers' great LaDainian Tomlinson says San Diego should trade Philip Rivers

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Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The San Diego Chargers are 1-3 on the season despite excellent play from their elite quarterback Philip Rivers. It's really something to behold when a team has a QB playing as well as Rivers has but are losing anyway. Even though the team has lost their top playmaker Keenan Allen at wide receiver, Rivers is still on pace to finish the season with an incredible 4,404 yards passing with 32 touchdowns and 4 interceptions.

If the Chargers can't win with Rivers playing that well, then maybe they should consider trading him altogether and enter into full on rebuild mode. That's what all-time great running back LaDainian Tomlinson (a former teammate of Philip Rivers in San Diego) has to say about it anyway.

"Let's just call it what it is," Tomlinson said on NFL Network where he is an analyst now. "The Chargers are rebuilding right now, OK? They're rebuilding, guys. And Philip only has about three or four years left. If you keep him there during this rebuilding process, you just wasted his entire career. He will have no chance to win.

"So the best thing to do, possibly, is trade him. Get something for him right now. Trade him to a contender and let this man get a chance to win a championship. That way you still get something for him."

As nice as that all sounds, this isn't a Madden video game and trades for players that make $20M a year are not so easy to accomplish. Contending teams that need a QB don't exactly grow on trees in the NFL, if you are a contender chances are you have a good QB already. Then add in that the team also has to have enough cap space and the desire to bring on a 34 year old QB making that type of money and it really becomes unrealistic. Oh yeah, and Philip Rivers contract has a no trade clause in it.

It certainly seems like you can add this thought into the wishful thinking category coming from LaDainian Tomlinson. It's hard not to consider this idea to be just a former teammate looking out for his friend and not wanting to see an all-time great QB's career end on a whimper because their team isn't good enough to compete.

On the other hand though, there is ONE team that actually does fit most of these requirements, that is the Houston Texans. They have a 3-1 record despite subpar play from their free agent acquisition QB Brock Osweiler, adding an elite signal caller like Rivers could make them a legitimate contender. Of course, doing so would mean they would already be giving up on the idea that Osweiler was the QB of the future they thought he was when they signed him to a 4 year, $72m contract this offseason.

That would be a bit of a black eye for the franchise, though trading Brock to the Chargers in the deal could be a win-win for both teams really. It would help make swallowing the dead money from the deal easier for each team anyway, a substantial roadblock with both QB's having just signed new deals. The Chargers would get a young, talented QB to grow with their 9th youngest team in the league while the Texans would get a QB fit to lead a contending team now.

The chances of all that happening? Slim to absolutely none, but that's not to say there wouldn't be some merit in the deal. That is the only trade that the Chargers should consider with Philip Rivers though and it would have to also come with a high draft pick from the Texans. If Houston was interested in making a deal like that then they should consider it, but if not then there is no doubt that the Chargers are better off keeping Rivers.

Having a QB as great as Philip Rivers is a very hard thing to find so they shouldn't move him just to be nice to him. If a deal were to make sense in the long haul that's one thing, but unless it was a great deal then they should keep Rivers whether it is wasting his career or not. With that being said, I would definitely give Houston a call to test the waters about it just in case anyway.

LaDainian Tomlinson: Chargers are about waste Philip Rivers' career
The QB turns 35 in December, so he doesn't have much time left in the league. That's why his former teammate, and current NFL Network analyst, LaDainian Tomlinson thinks San Diego should trade him.

LaDainian Tomlinson explains why the Chargers need to trade away Philip Rivers -
The former MVP and teammate of the QB doesn't want Rivers' career to go to waste

Is it Time to Trade Philip Rivers? - Bolts From The Blue
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