NFL

Philip Rivers Shares Story Behind Famed Bolo Tie With Peyton and Eli Manning

Rivers told Peyton and Eli Manning he wore the bolo ties in a light-hearted protest of then-coach Mike McCoy's formal dress code policy

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Imagine this: The bolo tie Chargers legend Philip Rivers was known to sport on the podium was actually a symbol of rebellion from the quarterback room.

That might be a slight exaggeration of how Rivers fell in love with his favorite gameday fashion accessory. Here's how he explained it.

During Monday night's "Manning Cast," an alternate broadcast of ESPN's Monday Night Football featuring brothers Peyton and Eli Manning and friends, Rivers said the bolo ties came from a loophole in then-head coach Mike McCoy's dress code policy.

“I was trying to buck the system,” Rivers said with a smile.

Under head coach Norv Turner, Chargers players had a semi-strict dress code when they traveled. "Slacks and a collared shirt and you were good," Rivers recalled.

Then when McCoy took the helm, the standard was lifted.

“When McCoy got there he said, ‘Coat and tie, no exceptions,'" Rivers said. "(Backup QB) Charlie Whitehurst and I got in the quarterback room and he said, ‘Hey, you should wear a bolo tie. [McCoy] didn’t say what kind of tie.’"

Rivers said it was too hard to bench the bolo tie once it made its debut.

"It kind of took off from there," he said. The bolo tie became a thing for fans in San Diego, despite his wife's Tiffany's better judgment. She hated the bolo ties, according to Rivers and called him crazy when he suggested he wear one during his remote appearance on the broadcast.

The next time we see a bolo tie hanging from RIvers' neck could be if (some would say "when") Rivers addresses a crowd in Canton, Ohio, after being inducted in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

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