As the 2019 NFL draft has inched closer, general managers and head coaches around the league have been holding news conferences.
By and large, they’re marginally useful affairs: GMs and coaches aren’t going to tip their hand, and an assessment that this year’s pass-rushing group is especially deep or something similar might be the most interesting nugget of information that’s shared.
Which is why it was refreshing that Los Angeles Chargers’ GM Tom Telesco just cut through all the drivel.
‘You don’t want to be here ... I don’t want to be here’
Telesco met with media on Monday, and unlike many in his position, he was clear that he wouldn’t be clear.
“I mean, probably a lot of you don’t want to be here for this because you know I’m not going to say anything. I don’t want to be here for this because I know I can’t say anything,” Telesco said. “So we’re both here and don’t really want to be here, but let’s try to get through this and have some fun.
“It’s tough. I mean we do this work all year and you guys have a lot of questions about it and it’s just not like you can really say right now. I’ll answer as many of your questions as I can. A lot may be just very general about the draft, but that’s just kind of the way it is.
“Once we pick the players, we’ll be up here and talk about these guys all day long.”
You have to respect the honesty.
Philip Rivers ‘is going to be here a while’
The Chargers, like a few other teams — the New Orleans Saints, New England Patriots, New York Giants, Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions — are in the position of having to think about the team’s future at quarterback.
Philip Rivers is 37 years old and beginning his 16th season with the Chargers; while Tom Brady and Drew Brees have shown it’s possible to play at a high level at the NFL-advanced age of 40, they can’t play forever.
Telesco was asked if he might draft Rivers’ heir apparent this weekend, and while he didn’t dismiss the idea of drafting a quarterback, he was also complimentary of Rivers’ play.
“He’s playing at a really high level right now; my expectation is he’s going to be here a while,” Telesco said. “I haven’t seen anything different. I’m grateful for each year. I really am. I’m grateful for every year that he’s playing. But, that doesn’t mean we can’t be looking long-term to see what the solution is down the road. But I’m grateful for every year. (If it wasn’t) a career year last year, it was certainly close. I’m very happy with him.”
Rivers was chosen for the Pro Bowl for the third straight year in 2018 (the eighth time in his career), and his 68.3 percent completion rate was the second-best of his career; he threw 32 touchdowns against 12 interceptions.
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