Chargers hope Philip Rivers with team for 'many, many years' to come

SAN DIEGO -- A month after stating the team has no intention of trading him, San Diego Chargers general manager Tom Telesco said once again that Philip Rivers is the team's quarterback of the present and the future in a half-hour, pre-draft conversation with reporters here on Wednesday.

"There really is no update," Telesco said, addressing the speculation that Rivers could be traded to the Tennessee Titans for the No. 2 overall pick, giving San Diego a chance to select quarterback Marcus Mariota. "As I've said for the last four months, Philip is our quarterback. And it's out plan and intent that he's our quarterback well into the future.

"And in all my discussions with him, he's shown a great amount of respect for his teammates, and a great amount of respect for this organization. And he's been here every day working extremely hard, working with his teammates being the leader that he is, and that's what we've all come to know him for."

Asked point blank whether the Chargers will keep Rivers on draft day, Telesco offered a similar refrain.

"I've been crystal clear of what our plans and intents are," Telesco said. "I don't know what else to say. He's our quarterback, hopefully for many, many years moving forward. I think he's got a lot of good years left in him.

"Through eight games last year he was an MVP candidate, so we're thrilled to have him."

Rivers is in the final year of his contract and scheduled to make $15.75 million in 2015. Rivers has indicated an unwillingness to engage in contract-extension talks, and will play out the deal. Rivers also reportedly has heartburn over the possibility of playing in Los Angeles next season if the franchise relocates.

Moving Rivers via trade to the Titans would offer a soft landing for everyone involved. The Titans would get a franchise quarterback, Rivers could relocate closer to his family roots in Alabama and the Chargers could draft their franchise quarterback of the future.

However, the Chargers appear unwilling to part ways with Rivers.

Telesco explained that the Chargers went through the expense of flying a group of decision-makers up to Eugene, Oregon, last week to work out Mariota as the organization doing its due diligence on the all-important quarterback group.

"In player evaluation we're never going to be 100 percent right," Telesco said. "We won't even be 80 percent right, but we will be 100 percent right on the preparation. And with any player in the draft, if [Chargers president] Dean [Spanos] ever leans over to me and asks me about a player, and I'm not prepared or don't have enough information on him, that's on me.

"When it comes to quarterbacks, we have to scout them a little differently. There's a lot more that goes into it."

Telesco also addressed defensive captain Eric Weddle choosing not to show up for voluntary workouts this week because he's reportedly unhappy with his contract situation. Like Rivers, Weddle is in the final year of his deal and is scheduled to make $7.5 million in 2015.

Weddle would like a contract extension, but the Chargers would like to wait until after the draft to address Weddle's contract status.

"They're voluntary workouts, No. 1," Telesco said. "And then No. 2, obviously contract discussions stay between us and the players. But on our calendar, our heavy focus in March is re-signing players on our team with expiring contracts, and then looking to sign players from other teams with their expiring contracts.

"That's the big focus in March. The focus in April is the draft, obviously from right now and for the next seven days is a heavy draft focus. And once you get into May, June and July before camp, that's when you look into extending players. And we've got a number of players here that we'll be looking to talk to about extensions, and he'll certainly be one of them."

Like Rivers, Telesco said he wants Weddle around for the long haul.

"He's a major part of our football team," Telesco said. "He's an excellent football player, and sure, our future would have him involved, there's no doubt. We're a better football team with him."