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Turner: "We've got to take the next step and overcome the adversity"

Posted Oct 8, 2012

Opening statement:
“In preparation for the game we spent a lot of time talking with the team in terms of how to handle the dome, the crowd noise, the environment and having to handle a very explosive team. It really was the type of game that we prepared for and that we expected. I thought that our guys handled the environment and the crowd noise as best as we have in that situation. We had one false start by a wide receiver of all things, but for the most part the game, particularly through the first three quarters, went the way I talked about it going all week. It was two teams going after each other, making plays and responding to plays that the teams made. I thought that some things went well for us and we had a 24-14 lead and we made a big play that I thought put us over the top as far as finishing the game off. And we had the interception and the touchdown was called back. It’s easy to talk and say that there was a momentum swing, that we went flat after that. They hit two big plays after that. They hit a screen against a blitz that we had run off effectively and I don’t see that as a momentum swing. I see that as them coming up with the right call against the look we had and making a big play. And then they had a big pass in the fourth quarter that helped them. And the last time that I checked, Drew [Brees] threw for 5,400 yards last year so he’s been known to hit a pass now and then. We can play that better, but he’s going to hit some plays. I love the way our team is preparing and I love the way team is aggressively playing. We’re playing extremely physical and extremely fast. We’ve got to take the next step and overcome the adversity that happens in a game and be able to finish a game. We’ve done that in three of our games and this week we weren’t able to do it. But this game to me is what our games are going to be like. This is the National Football League. We’re going to have the same game Monday night against Denver. We’re playing a blitzing defense, we’re playing an explosive offense and it’s going to be one of those games that you just have to go play. And you’ve got to play four quarters and respond to whatever happens. And you have to be the guy who makes the play last.”
 
On the roughing-the-passer penalty called on outside linebacker Melvin Ingram:
“I think that it’s pretty clear that the league has done an awful lot to make sure that quarterbacks are protected. They do get in very vulnerable situations. You can’t hit a quarterback with the crown of your helmet. If you lead with the crown, you’re probably going to get penalized.”
 
On the other penalties in the game:
“I think that the preseason and the first three games of the season showed everyone who follows football how hard it is to officiate a National Football League game. And I have great respect for our officials, what they do and how hard their job is. There are some tight calls and there are some bang-bang calls. There are some calls that go your way and there are some calls that don’t go your way. We had some that didn’t go our way. Hopefully in the future we have some that do go our way.”
 
On outside linebacker Melvin Ingram’s penalties affecting his playing time:
“We’re going to fix that issue. It’s coaching and it’s technique. It’s him understanding the way the games are officiated. There’s no question that we addressed it after the Raider game and it’s something that we’re going to have to deal with. Everyone in the league has dealt with it. You look at the great pass-rushers in this league and they’ve all learned how to handle it. We’ve got to get Melvin to do the same thing.”
 
On tackle Jared Gaither looking stiff late in the game:
“I heard that Cris Collinsworth said that, but he was looking down from up above. In the third to last play he (Gaither) strained his groin a little bit and I would rather have him come out in that situation. He got back in the huddle. Obviously there was no way that you could see it. I think that Cris [Collinsworth] saw it on the next play where Philip [Rivers] had to throw the ball away and the next play was a sack. You would like Jared to come out of the game and we could have put [Mike] Harris in. It would have helped us. I think that Jared is trying to fight through it and he felt that he could play. It wasn’t brought to my attention.”
 
On the procedure for identifying injured players who don’t communicate their injuries to the coaches:
“We’re trying to stay on top of that. In that case the player just has to let you know. If he can’t go, and some of these guys think that they can, they have to help us by letting us know.”
 
On Jared Gaither’s status:
“He’s sore, but it’s (groin) not torn. We’ll see where he is as we go through the week. I think that he has a chance to practice and to play.”
 
On running back Ryan Mathews’ performance against the Saints:
“I was really excited about the way that Ryan played. One of the things when you’re playing a defense like New Orleans is that it’s an eight-man front, it’s blitzing and it’s going to dial it up pretty good and give you a lot of different looks. Sometimes running in those eight-man fronts can be difficult. And we treat some of the short passes and screens like runs and Ryan had 18 touches for 140 yards. He handled it extremely well. Altogether the three backs had 31 touches for about 230 yards. I don’t know that you’re going to get that production every week but I’m excited about the production that we got from our backs in the running game and in the passing game. Some people misinterpret the touches and the runs. We want to run the ball, but some of those early screens were a lot more effective than running up inside into an eight-man front.”
 
On being able to run in the fourth quarter:
“Our plan was to be up 31-14 and be able to do like we did against Kansas City and like we did against Tennessee, closing the game out by pounding it a little bit and mixing in some of those things. The game changed dramatically when they scored and made it a three point game.”
 
On quarterback Philip Rivers possibly disagreeing with the decision to attempt a 55-yard field goal:
“The good thing is that that’s not his decision. And when it goes through I don’t know that anyone comments on it. I understand that different people have different opinions. The way that Nick [Novak] kicked in pregame, I felt good about him making it. I felt good about if he made it, kicking off and getting them pinned down. The great thing to me, and this is what we have to do as a team, is that we missed a field goal and no one blinked. Our defense went out there and stopped them on three plays. You react to what happens. My ideal situation would have been to make the field goal, kick off deep, pin them down there and hold them to get a shorter field. But we did a great job of stopping them when we had to. You would think that it’s tough going 90 yards there in the dome but we put together a great drive and I thought that it was a big drive in the game.”
 
On possible concerns over the secondary:
“There were a lot of plays in that game where we were outstanding. We got pressure and we got great coverage. Their pass offense is going to get some plays on you and we just have to minimize the big plays. I think we gave up three or four plays over 40 yards and we can stop those plays.”
 
On how quarterbacks Drew Brees and Peyton Manning compare to one another:
“They’re just different players and they run different offenses. But I look at production, the production they’ve had through their career and the production they’ve had over the last four or five weeks when we’re getting ready to play them. And they’re outstanding. They’re outstanding with their receivers, and their tight ends are good. Peyton [Manning] makes great decisions and they’re rolling offensively.”
 
On whether or not the secondary lost one-on-one battles:
“It’s the same thing as when Malcom [Floyd] catches the ball in the first quarter for 40 yards. It could be either guy. It’s not all one way. We don’t get to beat them and never have them beat us. Some of it was pressure, some of it that we’re not playing the right leverage. There are some things that we can help ourselves with in terms of technique. And we just have to minimize the big play and keep the ball in that mid-range where we can live with it.”
 
On the injuries with the defensive ends:
“I think that we should have all of our guys at practice on Wednesday. Our real game week starts on Thursday and I would expect to have them there. I thought that Corry [Liuget] was outstanding in the game again. He had an outstanding game last week. I thought that our defensive front as a whole played awfully well. They had 53 yards rushing. They did try to run the ball and ran into some real tough looks and we took advantage of that. There’s a lot of things that we did awfully well in that game and obviously there are some things that we have to fix.”
 
On what the Chargers are planning on doing differently in preparing for the Denver Broncos:
“It’s a different team that we’re facing, so we’ve got to put a plan together that handles the things that Denver does real well. They’re an aggressive defensive front, they give you a lot of pressure looks and they’re a balanced team that can run the ball. They’re awfully efficient in the passing game as well. What you do is put a plan together and you want to go out and play a week better. And when you get a chance to make a play that can turn a game, you have to take advantage of that play.”
 
On whether or not he’s confident the Chargers can get a win going into the bye week:
“We’re going to continue to approach it like it’s sixteen one-game seasons. We’ve got one game to go play and one game to win. We can worry about all those other scenarios now. Now that it’s added to it that it’s in our division, that it’s a really good football team and that we get a chance to play them at home. It’s going to be a really big game. It’s going to be exciting to have it here. You talk about New Orleans being 8-0 at home last year playing at the level that they do in the dome, home-field advantage is big. Our home-field advantage has always been good for us. And at home on a Monday night I expect our fans to have a big part in it. It’s part of the reason that we’ve had a lot of success against [Peyton] Manning. They’re an off-the-line or a no-huddle team and the crowd can affect that greatly.”
 
On the number of penalties and turnovers during the last possession of the game:
“I thought that the way we were approaching this two-minute that we were going to go down and score. Some things happened in the game that changed that. We had some penalties called on three consecutive plays. And what you do when something is happening that you think is a penalty you have to correct it. If a guy is competing and playing and they call a penalty on it you can’t tell them that they can’t do that if it’s not a penalty. So you just keep coaching the guys the way you can. I think we’re very capable of coming from behind and making the plays to go and score.”
 
On why the Chargers defense was so effective against running back Darren Sproles:
“I think that there are some things that a couple of teams did against him late last year and there were some things that people did to us when he was in there. He’s had great success on screens. That was a big part of our plan is that when he was in the backfield we had to be aware of that. And when he’s not in the backfield I think that it’s important that you treat him as a receiver and make sure that you have the right type of person to cover him.”

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