Philip Rivers' retirement may not last very long after all. Rivers, who retired at the end of last season, told Sam Farmer of the Los Angeles Times he would listen to the New Orleans Saints if they called him to play quarterback for the remainder of the 2021 season.
The timing is interesting for Rivers as the high school football team he coaches just finished its season. Rivers retired from the NFL to become the head coach at St. Michael's Catholic School in Alabama, where the team finished with a school record six victories (6-3 record) but failed to make the playoffs.
"Like I told you guys six or eight weeks ago, I'm going to stay somewhat ready in case the perfect storm hits," Rivers said to Mark Heim on WNSP-FM 105.5 Tuesday. "There's been no dialogue, but you can't shut the door on anything. Although I still stick by it's a super, super slim chance. It's got to be the right situation for our family."
Could the Saints battling for a playoff spot amid an uncertain quarterback situation be the right situation for Rivers? New Orleans is a half-game behind the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for the NFC South lead and has one of the league's top defenses, but has an uncertain quarterback situation with Jameis Winston out for the season with a torn ACL. Taysom Hill is still battling a concussion and didn't play in Week 8, leaving Trevor Siemian and rookie Ian Book as the only options on the roster until Hill returns.
Siemian played admirably in the win Sunday, completing 16 of 29 passes for 159 yards with a touchdown and zero interceptions. He could be the starting quarterback going forward, as Saints head coach Sean Payton said the Saints "are satisfied with their quarterback room." The Saints have a decision Sunday, if Hill is available, whether to go with him or Siemian.
"We'll see. This is going to be the six-million-dollar question and honestly, we're going to look closely at what the best thing is for our team this week," Payton said Monday. "As the week progresses, we'll see how we want to play it out and we'll be ready to play on Sunday."
Sunday's game against the Atlanta Falcons could play a major role in the Saints deciding to give Rivers a call. Rivers retired after 17 seasons as one of the league's all-time passing leaders, throwing for 63,440 yards and 421 touchdowns -- ranking fifth all-time in both categories.
In Rivers' final season with the Indianapolis Colts, he completed 68% of his passes for 4,169 yards with 24 touchdowns to 11 interceptions (97.0 rating). Rivers led the Colts to the playoffs with an 11-5 record at the age of 38.