In a week, cry me a Rivers

Given the hard line stance the San Diego Chargers have given the representatives for rookie quarterback Philip Rivers, is it possible that the two will come to terms in the next week? Not only is it possible, it may be likely, but anything can still happen.

The Chargers and the agent for Philip Rivers, Jimmy Sexton, have come to a stalemate. Each aired their laundry to the public. This is not a foreign concept to A.J. Smith who went public with the Eli Manning talk before the draft. It didn't backfire then and does not look like it will backfire now.

Sexton claimed it could throw a wrench in negotiations as it builds towards resentment. But he is smart enough to know that the card has been played. Now it is time to come together and ink the deal. Ironically going public sometimes has a way of bringing parties together.

Smith said in a statement, "Negotiations have broken down. Prior to the training camp report date we made an effort to get Philip signed. Also, during the past week, we exchanged ideas and could not come to an agreement. On Friday, we offered a great deal to Philip. We also notified both Philip and his agent, Jimmy Sexton, that the offer will stand until 5 p.m. Sunday evening and if not accepted, the offer will be pulled off the table. Our offer was rejected. We also informed them that the package we talked about and offered will now only go down in value."

The offer has been pulled is the line that immediately sticks out. The Chargers, in search of a new stadium and fans to line the seats, know they cannot truly step away from the bargaining table.

As a source within the organization so eloquently put it:

"It doesn't mean the offer is not out there to take."

As with any smart agent, Sexton plans to put Philip Rivers on the air sometime this week. Look for a cameo on the radio as he continues to uphold his lovable image, and it truly is. He has been put into a rare situation — well not in San Diego. Rivers is as he seems but is caught in a battle between the NFL owners and the NFLPA. Precedence could be set by what his agent or the Chargers can accomplish here. He may be in North Carolina but his heart yearns for San Diego.

There is mistrust between the sides after this weekend. Any talk from the parties involved will cast a negative light on the situation. Sexton and the Chargers did not talk on Tuesday and whoever they did talk to they kept up the motto of this dragging out. Who will blink first and concede?

It all comes full circle. With a preseason home game drawing near, the prospects of playing without the hype will bear its weight.

One thing that both sides have acknowledged privately is "Rivers is the man for the San Diego Chargers." Despite his holdout, there is even talk of him starting by week three or after the bye week. The front office was so impressed with the way he showed progress from rookie orientation to minicamp that they are sure he could be ready if he signs in the next week.

"He's such a student of the game, he absorbs the game," former offensive coordinator Noel Mazzone said. "He sees the big picture offensively that I would imagine he's going to grow.

"The more he feels comfortable with something, the more he's going to excel."

A missing ingredient that training camp goes on without is held in Rivers' back pocket. Hope.

Another coach that had him rated high expressed the same feelings, "He will not be outsmarted on the football field."

It brings us back to the negotiations. Going public may have been bold but it could also quickly force a deal. Beyond what is being said in public, both sides actually agree on this. Does it mean a deal is coming? Not necessarily but beyond the façade is a troubled organization looking to make a deal.

Perhaps the offer is off the table. It probably just fell on the chair.


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