The Wolfpacker

January 2014

The Wolfpacker: An Independent Magazine Covering NC State Sports

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■ pack pros NC State Is The New Quarterback U. Through 13 weeks, San Diego Chargers signal-caller Philip Rivers led the NFL in completion percentage (70.0), and ranked fourth in passing yards (3,633), fifth in yards per attempt (8.37) and touchdown throws (23), and sixth in quarterback rating (104.4). photo courtesy San Diego Chargers By Ryan Tice C State is the only college in the country that boasts a trio of starting quarterbacks in the NFL. All three signal-callers — 10th-year veteran Philip Rivers of the San Diego Chargers, second-year star Russell Wilson of the Seattle Seahawks and rapidly improving rookie Mike Glennon of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers — are ranked in the NFL's top 11 in quarterback rating through week 13. N Philip Rivers Rivers put up four consecutive seasons with at least 4,000 yards and 27 touchdowns through the air from 2008-11. However, the team failed to reach the postseason in each of those last two campaigns, and both the quarterback and his squad bottomed out last year, which led to the firing of head coach Norv Turner. Under new head coach Mike McCoy, a noted offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, Rivers' career has been revitalized. The field general nearly equaled last year's passing yardage total through just 12 games, and he needed just three more scoring tosses to tie last year's 26 touchdown passes. His quarterback rating of 104.4 is just more than one point shy of his career best as a starter, while he has completed an NFL-best 70.0 percent of his passes. In addition to surpassing both 30,000 passing yards and 200 touchdowns in his career this season, he has also cut down on the turnovers that plagued him over the last two years. During that time, he threw 35 interceptions and lost 12 fumbles — but this year he has thrown just nine picks and fumbled one time, which his team recovered. Russell Wilson All the Seahawks' quarterback does is win. He has yet to lose a home game in his NFL career — he was 14-0 in Seattle through Dec. 2 — and his overall record stood at 22-6. His win total is tied with the Steelers' Ben Roethlisberger for the most wins in a quarterback's first two years in the league since the AFL-NFL merger in 1970. Wilson has also joined an exclusive club of NFL quarterbacks who have thrown 20 or more touchdown passes in each of their first two seasons — the others are Hall of Famer Dan Marino, future Hall of Famer Peyton Manning and the Cincinnati Bengals' Andy Dalton. On the year, Wilson ranks third in the league in yards per attempt (8.76), passer rating (108.5) and rushing yards by a quarterback (456). In addition, the Seahawks — who have dealt with a slew of offensive line injuries this year — boast the league's best record at 11-1. Mike Glennon Glennon, the rookie third-round pick — ironically, the same round in which Seattle tabbed his former teammate Wilson — wasn't expected to see much time during his debut campaign, but that changed when Josh Freeman could not get the Tampa Bay offense in gear. Glennon was moved into the starting lineup after three losses in which the Bucs averaged just 11.3 points per game. He showed steady improvements during his first five starts, and then led Tampa Bay on a three-game winning streak. The team has nearly doubled its offensive output under the first-year passer, increasing its scoring average to 20.3 points per contest. 74  ■  the wolfpacker 74,76.Pack Pros.indd 74 12/5/13 2:47 PM

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