1-Man’s Opinion on Sports–Friday “CHARGERS–ON THE FIRING LINE”

Posted by on September 15th, 2023  •  0 Comments  • 

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The Chargers game with Miami.

Should have won.  Did not win.  Definitely lost.

The Miami win over the Chargers, the 466-yard passing day, the pass defense horrors are front and center.

The Bolts new coordinators had a good day on offense, an awful day on defense.

Kellen Moore and Derick Ansley spent Thursday with the media answering all the questions about good outings and bad decisions.

Comments I thought you’d enjoy reading:


On the ‘most encouraging part’ of the performance of the running game in Week 1:

“We talked about it throughout the week going into it, just play-style. It was our first shot, in a regular season game, to emphasize it. I thought that everyone contributed. The O-line, obviously. The tight ends, I thought that they were excellent in the run game. The running backs ran hard. The receivers went and got safeties when they needed to. [QB] Justin [Herbert] got us in the right plays, when necessary. I feel like it was a collective effort that worked really well.”


On ‘calling six rushing plays’ during RB Joshua Kelley’s touchdown drive:

“Every game takes different paths, and so does every drive. There are going to be times where you want to keep running it, there are times, maybe, where you want to keep passing it. We’ll navigate those different paths. I think each game has a different presentation.”


On the value of the run game ‘opening things up in the passing game’:

“It certainly has the potential to. Teams play different styles, you play different opponents. Every week is different, but I think it’s important that we at least have the evidence to support that. Hopefully, it does, potentially, as the season progresses — whether it’s this week or future weeks — that it may provide us some more one-on-one opportunities outside, just when they have to commit the down safety. We’ll see how it goes.”


On ‘what factors into calling multiple runs in a row’:

“Last week, obviously, tempo was something that we were able to utilize as drives kind of wore down. We’ll see how that presents itself this week, every week is different. Those are big, important opportunities and I thought our guys did an excellent job of just staying on the ball, kind of trusting the process, as far as when we do run those — why we’re running run and to understand the advantage that it presents. The guys did a good job. They finished some drives with some tempo and did a nice job.”


On the Titans’ rushing defense:

“Obviously, they’re one of the best [in the league]. They’ve been one of the best for a long time. It’s really, really challenging. They, obviously, have excellent personnel, they have excellent scheme. They’re really, really sound. They don’t give you anything easy. You’re going to earn everything in this league. It’s been a big challenge for us preparing for them.”


On the Titans ‘presenting light boxes and still leading the league in run defense’ and ‘if that is schematic or personnel’:

“I think that it’s both. Obviously, they have personnel that does a tremendous job up front, but I think that they’re really, really sound with their scheme. I think that they fit things really well, things that look like, ‘Hey, we might have an opportunity here,’ they’re just so sound in how they fit the runs. Everything’s connected from the front end all the way to the back end. They have done it for a long time and they have done it at a high level.”


On RB Joshua Kelley:

“Just a big-time professional. Obviously, we see the production on the field, but I think he prepares really, really well. He’s a great teammate to everyone. He knows his role. He embraces his role. When he gets those opportunities to take advantage of some chances there, he certainly takes advantage of them. As the season goes on, he’s a guy — like a number of these running backs — we’re going to need different guys to play different roles as the weeks go on.”


On ‘trial and error in figuring out’ WR Quentin Johnston’s usage:

“I think that there is certainly a role that we’d like to provide, as the season goes on. He will have different opportunities throughout the season — him, [WR] Derius [Davis], even the other three. You’re trying to use all of those guys and put them into different positions, and, hopefully, create these different roles that we can take advantage of.”


On the two-minute drill at the end of Week 1:

“We just have to play cleaner football. We certainly had a great opportunity to finish the game the way we wanted to and, at the end of the day, just didn’t get it done. Something that we all just have to make sure that we’re on the same page with.”


On if the offense was ‘caught off guard’ with the blitzing on the final drive:

“I think that it’s just a case of us making sure that we’re all on the same page and aligned. We could have certainly played better in that situation.”


On the ‘difficulty of calling running plays’ with QB Justin Herbert available to throw:

“I think you learn that every game takes a different path. If we have to throw it for 40, 50 attempts, we’ll do that. If we have to run it 40, 50 times, we’ll do that. Whatever we need to do, each and every week — and, the formula may change, week after week. Certainly, that is the fun part, I think, of the NFL. That’s the beauty of it, that every week is a completely different opponent with different challenges. You just find a path that, hopefully, works for you.”


On the ‘strength’ of a ‘balanced offense’:

“Something that we just emphasized throughout the offseason is that this is just the formula and we have to be willing to adapt and adjust each and every week and take it wherever we need to. There are going to be days where we can run the football to some success, or maybe days where we have to throw it a lot. We’ll just see what happens.”


On leading the NFL in rushing in the preseason and ‘being able to carry that into the regular season’:

“It certainly is a big emphasis for us. We spent a lot of this offseason, we’ve all — you guys included, probably [laughter] — spent time on this run game emphasis. It’s really exciting that when it comes to an opportunity like we had in Week 1, we’re able to take advantage of that, from a run game perspective. Excited about that. Excited to be able to build off of that. It doesn’t mean that you can do it each and every week, but we’ll see where it takes us.”






On the defense’s performance in Week 1:

“Well, it wasn’t good enough, first. Give a lot of credit to Miami, they had a good plan. The Cheetah [Dolphins WR Tyreek Hill] had one of those days. We didn’t do enough to stop him from having one of those days. We have to be better. We have to coach them better. We have to execute that.”


On areas of improvement:

“Just some leverage things. Pre-snap communication, understanding where people are at. Understanding that the ball may come out quicker versus certain sets, and all those things that happened, we can fix. The guys took total ownership for is in the meetings on Monday. Coaches, we take total ownership for our performance. It wasn’t good enough. We’ll get back to work this week, like we have — we’ve had two, really good days.”


On if the Titans’ offense will present similar looks to what the Dolphins displayed:

“I’m sure that you will see some sprinkles of that. It’s a copy-cat league. We do a really good job on Mondays of going through the corrections and sprinkling those things in throughout the week, so that if we see them again, we’re ready for them. Miami didn’t present a whole lot of problems schematically, we just have to do a better job of doing our jobs.”


On if the defense is ‘chomping at the bit to get back out there’ following the unit’s performance in Week 1:

“We have a bunch of grown men in our room. The coaches are really excited about getting back out there. I know I am, the staff feels the same way. Every seven days you get an opportunity to humble somebody, or somebody humbles you. We’ll get another chance this Sunday.”


On ‘if this is the biggest stylistic change’ in scheme, going from the Dolphins to the Titans:

“I don’t know that to be the biggest, but they are totally different. [Titans Head Coach] Mike [Vrabel], they do a really good job over there in Tennessee. They pride themselves on running the ball and being physical. Obviously, Miami, they came in here and they threw the ball a lot more. In terms of how that goes, yes, it’s going to be very different. Those two receivers in Miami are very talented. [Titans RB] Derrick [Henry] is very talented. [Titans QB] Ryan [Tannehill] is a really good quarterback. We have a lot of respect for them. Mike [Vrabel] has been doing a really good job there for the last five-plus year. They’re a playoff team. We have our hands full. They have our full focus.”


On if ‘busted coverages led to giving up that many yards’:

“I wouldn’t say that we busted coverages. I will say that we lost more than we won. We give a lot of credit to Miami, they did a really good job of getting their players the ball. Cheetah [Hill] is a space player. He can take the top off. They did a really good job of doing that. It’s our job to stop that. As coaches, we have to do better, and we will.”


On the performance of the pass rush in Week 1:

“I thought that those guys rushed the passer really well. Unfortunately, the ball was out so quick. If we could have covered them a little bit better and had [Tagovailoa] held the ball for another click, then you would’ve seen some of those sacks, maybe, materialize. I thought that [OLB] Joey [Bosa] did a really good job of being physical. He was speed-to-power, did a really good job, [OLB] Khalil [Mack]. I thought that everybody played with good effort, The ball just didn’t bounce our way on Sunday. Sometimes, that’s how it goes.”


On ‘projecting’ how to improve the pass rush and ‘if it is as simple as improving in coverage’:

“I think that you said it. We always pride ourselves on the rush and the cover working together. When you get coverage sacks, people always say the coverage sacks, you do that when the back end is connected and the front end is doing their job, as well. When you get interceptions off of tips and overthrows, that’s because guys are affecting the quarterback. You don’t always have to hit the quarterback, you just have to affect him. He has to feel that rush. He has to be starting to look at that rush. The coverages have got to be blurry in the back end and we have to disguise. There is a lot that goes into that, not just one man up front just whooping another man. It’s all 11 guys doing their job.”


On the fourth-and-seven conversion:

“We were playing quarters coverage. We got a little bit deep in our zone, our flat defender got a little bit deep. They kind of high-low’d him a little bit. [Dolphins QB] Tua [Tagovailoa] came back, he was looking deep and he dumped it down to the flat, and they ended up getting it. One of those that we wish that we could have back, but we just have to play it a little bit better — a little bit tighter in that situation.”


On CB J.C. Jackson’s interception and his ‘assessment’ of Jackson’s decision to return the interception:

“Hindsight is always 20/20, where you always wish that you would’ve done something that you didn’t. We want our players to be aggressive and we want our players to be smart. You want to have time and space to bring it out [of the endzone], but if you make a decision and you are bringing it out, you have to get what you can get. If you stay in, you have to take a knee and get the ball back to [QB] Justin [Herbert]. It’s one of those bang-bang plays where you have to make a rash decision. Sometimes, it may not go your way.”


On Jackson’s pass interference near the end of the first half:

“I think you get experience once you go through things and you learn from them. The whole group can learn from that, the whole team, really. He was in a good position. It was one of those things where I think he was trying to go up and be aggressive with the ball, and just got there a little early. We are never going to take the aggressiveness away from our players, but you have to be smarter in situational football. You have to play well on third down. You have to be good in the red area, two-minute. We didn’t do a very good job in that situation. I hope we can learn from that.”


On S JT Woods’ performance in Week 1:

“I thought that JT [Woods] did his job. He really prides himself on being more physical. I thought he had a really good open-field contact tackle on [Dolphins RB Raheem] Mostert, which is encouraging. He’s getting better, so we’re proud of that. He’s a big guy that we need to continue to get better, to build up down the road.”


On Woods’ responsibility on Jackson’s pass defensed in the first quarter intended for Dolphins WR Tyreek Hill:

“He’s the deep safety. You’d like for him to be a little bit deeper, have a little bit more respect for the deep part of the field. That’s a play that he can intercept, too. We’ve seen him intercept that. He has enough speed to get to that point. He was a little bit off, but J.C. [Jackson] had a chance to intercept it, as well. Hindsight, if they do it right, both of them have a chance to intercept that ball.”


On LB Kenneth Murray Jr.’s performance in Week 1:

“I thought that Murray played physical. He wasn’t perfect, like none of us were, but he played physical. He was a commander out there. It was a new role playing beside a new person, which is good for him. He’s getting better. He has a new role this week. We’re proud of Kenny [Murray Jr.].”


On the run defense:

“They ran it for 70 yards or whatever on 20 carries. They stressed it, but I thought that we held strong there. They were committed to throwing the ball and we didn’t do enough work on the back end to stop them from doing that. We take pride in the back end and we’ll get that fixed.”


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