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Imagining Philip Rivers with the Bengals

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Jan 5, 2014; Cincinnati, OH, USA; San Diego Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers (17) celebrates with fans after winning the AFC wild card playoff football game against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium. San Diego won 27-10. Mandatory Credit: Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

According to Ian Rapaport of NFL.com, the San Diego Chargers are giving consideration to trading quarterback Philip Rivers.  This could be due to Rivers’ concern over the team’s future location or the prospects of the franchise going forward, but regardless of the reasoning, trading their franchise quarterback seems feasible. Understanding that the possibility of the Bengals trading for Rivers simply isn’t realistic, I couldn’t help but allow my mind to race about it and what it would take to acquire Rivers.

If the Chargers are to do the impossible and trade Rivers, it seems they want their next quarterback to be in place.  Although the Bengals aren’t going to be able to sell San Diego on the idea of taking Andy Dalton, they could still make an appealing offer.

The Chargers have typically employed a pass heavy offense in the past.  This is likely due to several reasons, one being their lack of a running back.  The Bengals could ameliorate the Chargers need at running back by offering up Giovani Bernard.  He would fit their offense well given his ability in the receiving game.  He also would likely prove to be a much more capable runner outside of a power running system.

If the Bengals were to offer up Bernard and their first round selection, would this be enough to score Rivers?  Would the Cincinnati, and its fans be amenable to such a trade?

The benefit to Cincinnati would be obvious at quarterback, though they’d have to find a trade for Dalton, but given his contract being essentially year-to-year following 2015, it may not be terribly difficult.  The Bengals would lose their first round selection and would likely use one of their remaining eight on a running back, something that isn’t likely without this hypothetical deal, but Rivers would vault them into contention.

For San Diego, they would gain an incredibly talented and versatile running back who theoretically compliments their offense well, something they are missing currently.  They also gain the 21st selection in this year’s draft meaning, unless they trade up for Marcus Mariota, they could still score quarterback Bryce Petty who has already visited with the Chargers.

Although the possibility of a deal is impossible, allow your mind to drift just for a moment of fun and let us know what you think.

Next: 2015 Draft: Bengals' Wants versus Needs

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