SAN DIEGO -- It wasn’t a good look.
Late in the game in the San Diego Chargers' 17-3 loss to the Denver Broncos, quarterback Philip Rivers was driven to the ground by edge rusher Von Miller after a pass attempt to tight end Ladarius Green.
Rivers didn’t appreciate the hit and the two had words after the play, with Miller grabbing Rivers by the jersey and having to be separated from Rivers by an official.
Rivers continued to jaw at Miller as he went back to the huddle. But the telling thing was that no San Diego offensive lineman came to Rivers’ rescue.
“I thought [a penalty] could have been called,” Rivers said, when asked about Miller’s actions.
“I don’t think he was happy with the cologne I was wearing,” quipped Miller after the game.
According to ESPN Stats and Information, Rivers was pressured on 49 percent of his drop-backs (19 of 39), his highest pressure percentage in a game in the past seven seasons.
The Broncos entered the game pressuring opposing quarterbacks on a league-high 38 percent of drop-backs, on pace to be the highest rate for any defense in the past 7 seasons.
“You don’t like it,” said Chargers tackle Chris Hairston, who allowed the quarterback hit by Miller. “You’ve got to have your guy’s back. You don’t want to do anything to draw a penalty and be a bad teammate. But being a good teammate is showing support and having your guy’s back. We’ve got to do a better job of that.”
Guard Kenny Wiggins said he didn’t realize something had happened between Miller and Rivers, and that he was focused on keeping Rivers clean.
“It didn’t matter if it was Philip, Danny (Woodhead) or anybody else,” Wiggins said. “If I saw something like that happen in the middle of the game, I would have been over there no matter what.
“But I’m worrying about what’s in front of me. I’m worrying about keeping my guy in front of me. I’m not really worried about what’s going on behind me. So what are you going to do when you don’t know what’s happening?”
With the Chargers throwing the football 62 percent of the time this season, center Trevor Robinson said offensive line coach Joe D’Allessandris’ message was simple -- protect your teammates and make sure nothing like that happens again.
“That’s our guy,” Robinson said. “Whether it’s pass protection or something extracurricular that’s going on, that’s on us.
“And that’s obviously something that we don’t want on film, or for something like that to happen. I don’t think there’s any situation on the field where someone is going to consciously let that happen. ... Obviously he’s our franchise, and it’s on us to protect him. That’s something we’ll have to do better.”