The Indianapolis Colts made it official Saturday, announcing they have signed eight-time NFL Pro Bowl quarterback Philip Rivers.
Rivers, whose 16-year tenure with the Chargers ended in February, was reported on Tuesday to be heading to Indianapolis as a free agent on a one-year, $25 million deal.
The Colts did not supply details of the one-year contract.
Rivers, 38, is sixth on the NFL’s all-time passing yards list with 59,271.
He guided the Chargers to six playoff appearances, but endured a disappointing 2019 campaign as the team finished at the bottom of the AFC West division at 5-11.
“I’m certainly not coming off my best year, but I know I can play at a high level,” Rivers told reporters on Friday. “I did it in spurts – just didn’t do it consistently enough.”
Rivers acknowledged he thought about retirement, and if he hadn’t found a team he felt was a good fit he was prepared to end his playing days and head into a coaching career.
Rivers said he still sees himself coaching his son Gunner, now 12, in high school.
“That should give you a little idea,” Rivers said of his likely timeline toward retirement.
“I’m not going to get carried away. I don’t think you’ll see me in the Tom Brady range,” the six-time Super Bowl winner with New England who just departed the Patriots for Tampa Bay, where he’ll be 43 when next season begins.
In the meantime, however, the Colts are hoping Rivers’ experience and skill will make an instant impact, and bring out the best in a young squad.
Current Colts coach Frank Reich was quarterbacks coach of the Chargers and Indianapolis offensive coordinator Nick Sirianni was also in San Diego in 2013, when Rivers won Comeback Player of the Year, throwing for 4,478 yards, 32 touchdowns and leading the league in NFL in completion percentage.
“I know what they’re trying to get out of a play, why they’re calling this,” Rivers said of his rapport with both. “They understand how I think and how I look for things.”
The Colts have been without a star quarterback since the surprise retirement of Andrew Luck prior to the 2019 season.
Jacoby Brissett, who stepped in as starter and got the Colts off to a 5-2 start last season, collapsed in the second half as Indianapolis went 2-7 the rest of the way.