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Sun., Jul. 19, 2015 7:30 AM PDT
Sibling rivalry emerges in AFC West
SAN DIEGO – Brandon Taylor grew up in a three-bedroom house with five sisters and three brothers.
He has a great relationship with his siblings, but he’ll gladly put that on hold for one of his brothers two weeks out of the year.
That’s because Curtis Taylor, also a defensive back out of LSU, plays for the Oakland Raiders.
When the Chargers picked Brandon Taylor in the third round after trading with Miami to move up five spots, the two became the latest sub-plot in one of the AFC West’s fiercest rivalries.
Taylor, who has heard stories of the game’s intensity since being drafted, said he loves his brother, but on game day, “it’s all hate.”
Head Coach Norv Turner got a call from Philip Rivers on Saturday extolling Taylor’s virtues. Philip’s younger brother, Stephen Rivers, is a quarterback at LSU and Taylor’s former teammate.
For his part, Taylor returned the favor.
“(Rivers) has the mindset of a linebacker playing quarterback and he doesn’t fear anybody,” Taylor said. “You always see him talking junk. His brother’s the same way. (He talks) all the time. He’s like 6-8, so people don’t mess with him.”
Taylor entered LSU as a cornerback competing with Patrick Peterson (No. 5 overall, 2011) and Morris Claiborne (No. 6 overall, 2012) for a starting spot. Then-LSU coach Nick Saban asked him to move to safety before his sophomore season, and by 2012, Taylor was a leader for the SEC Championship defense.
Kendall Reyes, San Diego’s second-round pick, also was introduced at Chargers Park on Saturday afternoon.
Taylor and Reyes both were captains last season.
“My mom always wanted me to be the man of the house, so I always had responsibility with the family. As I got older, people looked up to me because I’m not going to tell you to do something unless I’m going to do it myself,” Reyes said.
“(As a leader) sometimes you’ve got to be that ‘rah-rah’ guy. Sometimes everyone’s playing good, everyone’s being vocal and I’ve just got to lead by example. Sometimes you’ve got to get on people. I was always the type of guy, whatever I need to do at that time, that’s what I’m going to do.”
Reyes quietly hoped the Chargers would select him, in part because of his pre-draft visit in San Diego and his talk with defensive coordinator John Pagano.
“I’m a big fan of him. He was real cool when I came on my visit,” Reyes said. “We just sat and chatted for a couple hours. Me and him vibed really well and he’s a great guy.”