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Philip Rivers seeks to strike balance between 'aggressive and stupid'

No one would define Philip Rivers as a scared quarterback. From his willingness to stand in under pressure to attempting tight-fitting windows, there is no fear in the 38-year-old's game.

Balancing aggression with smart decisions is another matter altogether.

After chucking 20 interceptions in his final season with the Chargers -- many of the blink-and-heave variety -- Rivers is seeking to strike a balance in his first year with Indianapolis.

"I certainly feel confident in throwing the ball in tight windows or throwing the ball in tight coverage and being accurate where it's our ball or nobody," Rivers said, via the team's official website. "Certainly I had some throws get away from me in the past -- really, just last year more than anything. But I don't want that to turn me into someone that's scared to make a play, because I don't think you can play that way either. So I think there's a fine line there between aggressive and stupid."

Since 2010, Rivers ranked tied for 13th in the NFL in interceptions (13), for third (20), for 10th (15), for 17th (11), for first (18), for ninth (13), first (21), tied for 18th (10), for ninth (12) and third in 2019 (20).

Were it not for Jameis Winston's outsized 30 interceptions last year, much more attention would have been paid to the battle between Rivers and Baker Mayfield for the top spot on the interceptions chart.

Clearly, throughout his career, Rivers has been willing to take chances with the ball, hence ranking first in the NFL in interceptions twice in the past decade. Sometimes he threads the needle for a big play few would consider available. Other times it ends up in the opponent's hands.

Part of the issue last season was the Chargers offensive line was a mess, as it's been for years. Moving to Indianapolis should help in that regard, as he now plays behind one of the best lines in the league.

But after a turnover-plagued season, Rivers is aiming to find a balance in Frank Reich's offense of protecting the football but not negating that gunslinging mentality.

"I think the biggest thing for me is to be myself," Rivers said. "But also, find that sweet spot again, from aggressiveness to stupid, and know what kind of game it is and how the whole thing's coming together, and certainly have done that throughout my career in different years and different times, and don't see any reason why I can't do that again."

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