Recently retired Indianapolis Colts quarterback Philip Rivers, who was praised for his dealings with local and national media during his career, has been selected as the 2021 Good Guy Award winner by the Professional Football Writers of America (PFWA).
Rivers, the 17th Good Guy Award winner, is the first member of the Colts’ franchise to win the award.
Other nominees for the Good Guy Award were recently retired New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees, Baltimore Ravens defensive end Calais Campbell, New York Giants cornerback Logan Ryan and Denver Broncos safety Justin Simmons.
The Good Guy Award is given to an NFL player for his qualities and professional style in helping pro football writers do their jobs. The award has been presented annually by the PFWA since 2005.
Rivers earned praise for consistently tackling all topics, even in a Zoom setting, and offering answers with perspective, wit and originality during his career.
“Throughout his career, in good times and bad, Philip Rivers was unwavering in his professionalism in dealing with the media,” said Los Angeles Times writer and 2019 PFWA Career Achievement Award winner Sam Farmer. “He was accessible and thoughtful, and more than that, he was a really good guy. That set the tone for the entire locker room, and by and large, his teammates followed his lead.”
Rivers was selected No. 4 overall in the 2004 NFL Draft by the San Diego Chargers, and in 16 seasons with the Chargers, he became the franchise’s most prolific passer. He completed 4,908 of 7,591 passes (64.7 percent) for 59,771 yards and 397 touchdowns – all franchise records. He was also selected to eight Pro Bowls and was the PFWA’s 2013 Comeback Player of the Year,
He joined the Colts in the 2020 offseason, and he completed 68 percent of his pass attempts (369 of 543) for 4,169 yards and 24 touchdowns to lead Indianapolis to the AFC playoffs with a 11-5 record. In his final NFL contest in the AFC Wild Card Game, he threw for 309 yards and two TDs in a loss to Buffalo.
Rivers announced his retirement from pro football on January 20, 2021. He finished his career fourth in 300-yard passing games in NFL history, fifth all-time in passing yards, touchdowns and completions, sixth in passing attempts.
ABOUT THE PFWA: In its 58th season in 2021, the Professional Football Writers of America (PFWA) is the official voice of pro football writers, promoting and fighting for access to NFL personnel to best serve the public. The PFWA is made up of accredited writers who cover the NFL and the 32 teams daily. Lindsay Jones of The Athletic is the PFWA president for the 2021-22 seasons and the organization’s 30th president. Jenny Vrentas of Sports Illustrated is the PFWA’s first vice-president, Calvin Watkins of the Dallas Morning News is the second vice-president and Mike Sando of The Athletic is the secretary-treasurer. At-large board members include USA Today’s Mike Jones, ESPN.com’s Jeff Legwold, The Athletic’s Dan Pompei and ProFootballTalk.com’s Charean Williams. Follow the PFWA at ProFootballWriters.org and on Twitter at @PFWAwriters.
GOOD GUY AWARD WINNERS (To a NFL player for his qualities and professional style in helping the pro football writers do their job) Year indicates when award was presented for previous season: 2005 – Jerome Bettis (Pittsburgh Steelers); 2006 – Tiki Barber (New York Giants); 2007 – LaDainian Tomlinson (San Diego Chargers); 2008 – Brett Favre (Green Bay Packers); 2009 – Kurt Warner (Arizona Cardinals); 2010 – Drew Brees (New Orleans Saints); 2011 – Aaron Rodgers (Green Bay Packers); 2012 – Tim Tebow (Denver Broncos); 2013 – Tony Gonzalez (Atlanta Falcons); 2014 – Russell Wilson (Seattle Seahawks); 2015 – Richard Sherman (Seattle Seahawks); 2016 – Thomas Davis (Carolina Panthers); 2017 – Larry Fitzgerald (Arizona Cardinals); 2018 – Chris Long (Philadelphia Eagles); 2019 – Chris Long (Philadelphia Eagles); 2020 – Eli Manning (New York Giants); 2021 – Philip Rivers (Indianapolis Colts)