Scandrick has 'world of respect' for Rivers

IRVING, Texas -- In the late stages of training-camp practices in 2012, the Dallas Cowboys visited the San Diego Chargers for a few days to scrimmage.

The most eventful event of these sessions occurred between Cowboys cornerback Orlando Scandrick and Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers. During a two-minute drill, Rivers scored a touchdown and spiked the ball.

It drew the ire of Scandrick, who said something.

On Sunday, the Chargers and Cowboys meet again. But Scandrick and Rivers are playing nice. In fact, there's now a mutual respect between them.

"We had some fun, that guy, we talked after the practice and I kinda picked his brain a little bit and see what he was thinking because it was preseason," Scandrick said. "I just like to talk to the quarterbacks to see what they're thinking so I can get a better understanding of what their reads are so it can give me a better understanding of how to defend things."

Scandrick and Rivers both have played well in the first three weeks of the season. Scandrick has taken the starting job from an injured Morris Claiborne, and Rivers is second in the NFL in passer rating (116.2) and tied for second in touchdown passes (eight).

"I love Philip," Scandrick said. "Just from over the years competing with him, practicing with him, I love that guy, man. I got the world of respect for him. For a lot of years, 10 years for him, outside of his rookie year, nine of those years have been on his back. He's a stand-up guy, he takes so much of accountability. I remember watching him at North Carolina State when I was a kid, and now I'm playing against him. He's about as outstanding as they come, he's smart, he's tough and he's competitive."

Said Rivers of Scandrick: "He’s a heck of a competitor. He can play at the outside corner position, obviously, and he’s a real crafty guy there in the slot when he plays the nickel. I best describe him as 'a football player,' which means he’s just a complete player. He’s so competitive. He has a knack for making plays and he plays the ball well. He’s certainly a big contributor for them. I know with [Cowboys have] Claiborne and [Brandon] Carr, but he’s also been outside and he comes in the nickel and third-down situations, so he’s a solid player for him."