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  1. #1
    Keenum's Avatar
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    Chargers Starts to Play First Half Against Rams

    Turner likes team’s physical play, mistakes are "correctable"

    When Chargers Head Coach Norv Turner popped in the tape of Sunday night’s preseason opener, he saw several plays that made him smile, a few mistakes that made him shake his head and a handful of missed opportunities that left him feeling encouraged.

    “It was good for us to go out and play,” Turner said. “I wanted to be a physical team. We were extremely physical. I wanted to see our young guys who have been going good in camp step up and show what they’re going to be able to give us and play fast. I thought a lot of our young players played fast. I didn’t want to see certainly the mistakes that we had, but after looking at it, they’re correctable. They’re things we’ll go to work on tomorrow when we start practice.”

    The evidence of the Chargers’ physicality can be found in the rushing statistics. The Chargers gained 124 yards on 22 carries, an impressive average of 5.6 yards per carry. However, Turner pointed to the first series run by his first-team offense as an example of how his team needs to improve. That series saw Philip Rivers and company move the ball 45 yards in just four snaps, but a holding penalty on the fourth left the Chargers on the Seattle 41-yard line instead of the 31.

    “It nullifies a 13-yard run,” Turner said. “Those are things we can correct; things we have to correct. The physical part of that play, that’s as well run a play as any we had. There were a number of plays in that game, particularly early, that demonstrated the difference is so small between having a successful play, having a big play and having a negative play.

    He also pointed out Drayton Florence’s interception that was called back.

    “He makes the right play,” Turner said. “He hooks the receiver a little bit. He doesn’t need to. He’s in great position. Obviously there are times when that gets called and there are times when he gets away with it. But he makes a great play on the ball. That’s the kind of play that gives you a great start early in the game.”

    Turner believes some of the issues were also young players being put in positions they haven’t been in before. Late last week, Tony Pape was moved from tackle to guard because of injury.

    “Two of the sacks that we had are a result of him not handling a ‘game’ (by Seattle’s defensive linemen),” Turner said. “ With three more days at right guard before we play in St. Louis, hopefully he’ll have a better understanding of what he’s being asked to do.”

    Chargers players were given the day off Monday. They’ll resume practice Tuesday afternoon and will have just three full days of work before they leave Friday for St. Louis. Turner believes that his squad will make the adjustments necessary to have a strong showing against the Rams.

    “I’ve always believed that Week 1 to Week 2 in the preseason and the regular season, you make great improvements because of that excitement that’s involved,” Turner said. “We did a lot of good things, but we need to play with more consistency.”

    Half full

    Turner said that his starters will play throughout the first half when the Bolts travel to St. Louis this weekend.

    “That’s been the plan all along,” Turner said. “Hopefully they’ll look a lot more in sync.”

    Injury update

    The Chargers reported six injuries from Sunday’s contest: cornerback Stephen Gregory (quad contusion), linebacker Marques Harris (shoulder), linebacker Jyles Tucker (concussion), safety Eric Weddle (ankle), linebacker Anthony Waters (knee) and defensive tackle Jamal Williams (foot).

    Williams underwent an MRI Monday afternoon. Results were negative, and the two-time Pro Bowler is day-to-day with a foot sprain. Turner said that Harris is day-to-day, and he does not think Weddle will miss much time. Waters suffered a strain in his right knee. The ACL injury he suffered as a senior at Clemson was in his left knee.

    Consistency counts

    One area that Turner would like to see improve is the consistency from his wide receivers. Vincent Jackson, Kassim Osgood and Craig Davis all missed practice time through the first two weeks of training camp, and Turner thought it showed.

    “I don’t think we’ll get it until we can get them on the field every down,” Turner said. “There’s going to be a real emphasis in terms of those guys. Them being able to be on the field every down, them being able to practice because that’s how we’re going to get the progress from those guys as we go through the next month.”

    Good work

    In contrast to the receivers, Turner believes that the solid effort turned in by running back Darren Sproles is a reflection of what he has done on the practice field.

    “Some of the guys that have missed practice, we’re not getting the consistency we’re going to have to get,” Turner said. “Darren has not missed a practice. He’s been practicing like that since March. He has had that kind of camp. It’s amazing how it transfers right into the first preseason game. That’s the way he’s been practicing. He was impressive on the tape.”

    Sproles finished the night with 134 combined yards (63 rushing, 36 receiving, 13 on punt returns and 22 on kickoffs).

    On your toes

    Although the play didn’t work out as planned, Turner was excited about the concept of the wide receiver reverse run by Davis in the first quarter. Had Davis not mishandled the exchange, Turner believes it would have been a big gain.

    “The way people play our running game and the way people over commit to trying to stop LT and Michael (Turner), it gives you some great opportunities for misdirection plays and reverses and those types of things,” Turner said. “The one thing I always tell our guys, the only thing that matters to me when we run a reverse, we run a trick play, is that we end up with the ball. Sometimes you get big plays out of them, sometimes you get a four- or five-yard gain out of them. If we end up with the ball, it’s worth doing because we’ve got to protect our running game.”

    Special night

    Turner commended linebacker Carlos Polk, fullback Andrew Pinnock, and rookie linebackers Nick Roach and Tucker on their play in the kicking game Sunday night.

    I like that. Looks like we'll get a good look at our defense this time!
    Of course, Tomlinson usually doesn't play until their 3rd preseason game, so it's the Chargers without LT.

  2. #2
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    Smile Re: Chargers Starts to Play First Half Against Rams

    Quote Originally Posted by Keenum View Post
    I like that. Looks like we'll get a good look at our defense this time!
    Of course, Tomlinson usually doesn't play until their 3rd preseason game, so it's the Chargers without LT.
    Yeah, but it will be a nice test against Turner and their O-Line, I want to see Carriker go WACK! and stuff them up for a huge loss. A nice, hard, sack on Rivers by anyone on our D would be nice
    Last edited by prof22693; -08-15-2007 at 12:04 AM. Reason: blahblahbalbh

  3. #3
    ImJohnWayne is offline Awaiting Email Conformation
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    Re: Chargers Starts to Play First Half Against Rams

    Really dont think we could ask for a better test of our new (and hopefully improved) run defense.

  4. #4
    helorm341 Guest

    Re: Chargers Starts to Play First Half Against Rams

    LT isn't going to be playing though, he never plays in the offseason, he won't even be dressed.

  5. #5
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    Re: Chargers Starts to Play First Half Against Rams

    Will be a good test for the run defense even without LT, he doesn't get all his yards without having a very strong line, so going up against their O-line should help in Carriker's progression and the run defense overall. And let's not forget LT's backup Turner is pretty darn good in his own right. Looking forward to watching this one especially as the Chargers starters will play most of the 1st half..

  6. #6
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    Re: Chargers Starts to Play First Half Against Rams

    I hope they play not just the 1st half, but the 2nd half as well. Arguably, the Chargers have the most talented roster in football, and I would love for not just our staters, but our backups to get a shot at their ones, as well.

    Even if the scoreboard goes against us, I'm looking forward to seeing their starters on the field as much as possible.

  7. #7
    laram0's Avatar
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    Re: Chargers Starts to Play First Half Against Rams

    Maybe a shot to Philip Rivers knee. (ie:Rodney Harrison on Trent Green)

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