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This week on Chargers Weekly, Chris Hayre catches up with players and beat writers to get a comprehensive preview of what to expect this Sunday when the Bolts travel to Denver to take on the Broncos.
First, Hayre asked defensive back Desmond King what the keys will be for the team to bounce back after losing the first matchup to Denver earlier in the year.
“I would say eliminate the explosive plays, stopping the run and just getting turnovers on defense,” King said. “That’s somewhere we can definitely improve at is getting our turnovers up, and I think that can help us this weekend.”
Hayre also chatted with Broncos beat reporter Ryan O’Halloran to gather this week’s opposing view and how the Broncos offense has been “running through” second-year wide receiver Courtland Sutton.
“(Sutton’s) on pace for a 1,000-yard year and maybe has an outside shot at the Pro Bowl,” O’Halloran said. “But last week… he only had one catch against Buffalo. It’s up to the Broncos coaches to get him away from coverage and (double teams).”
Finally, Jeff Miller from the Los Angeles Times, Gilbert Manzano from Southern California News Group and Joe Reedy from The Associated Press sat down for this week’s beat writers round table. Reedy pointed to Hunter Henry as a player to watch Sunday, as the tight end missed the previous meeting against the Broncos due to injury.
“In that first game against Denver, the Broncos did a very good job of taking away the receivers in the intermediate and deep games,” Reedy said. “With Hunter (Henry)... averaging eight targets and six receptions a game, does that open things up to where Philip (Rivers) can take more deep shots, the intermediate opens up, and does that open up the run game too?”
Chargers radio sideline reporter Shannon Farren joined Playmakers to discuss her background, what she loves about her work, the Chargers and more.
First, Farren shared details about her media career, which she began at 19 years old doing weather forecasts and deejaying country music. For the last four years, she has co-hosted a radio show on KFI-AM 640, the Chargers radio station.
“The relationship between the people on AM radio and the listeners is one of the most intimate relationships in broadcasting,” Farren said. “When I meet people who listen to our show, it’s like we’re instant friends. They know everything about me, (because) we have no filters on KFI. We are who we are 100 percent of the time.”
She believes the way to develop a rapport with listeners is by “being 100 percent yourself.”
“If you’re gonna be on radio, you have to be yourself,” Farren said, “because that’s the only way you’re going to build that relationship.”
Farren also said she enjoys speaking about a broad range of topics on-air, as well as the uncertainty of what will be covered on a given day.
She is also in her third season as Chargers radio’s sideline reporter and described the opportunity as a “dream come true.”
“I’m a lifetime football fan,” she said. “Being this close to the action...and being able to see it through the players’ eyes and what they’re going through and the adversity that they face and just how difficult of a game this is, how fast...how brutal...how exciting, it’s just constant adrenaline every Sunday.”
Farren said that part of being so close comes hearing things she has “never heard my whole life.”
“Words being strung together that I never envisioned being strung together...It’s so much fun,” Farren said.
Along with that, the most challenging part of being a sideline reporter, according to Farren, is determining what material she will bring up on air.
“You do see and hear a lot of things, but you don’t want to compromise anyone’s privacy,” Farren said. “You want to be able to give fans that...inside information. At the same time, you’re looking out for the players, you’re looking out for the team, and you want to make sure that the information you’re giving is not gonna hurt anyone.”
Next, Farren, a bratwurst connoisseur, talked stadium meats and revealed “something she (doesn’t) like to admit all the time.”
“I do bring my own mustard,” Farren said. “Listen, when you are with a bratwurst in a stadium and there’s no spicy mustard, that’s a disappointment.”
Finally, Farren was optimistic about the Chargers’ chances on Sunday and throughout the rest of the season.
“They’re gonna win out the rest of the season,” Farren said. “They’re gonna need a little help, but there’s still a chance for the playoffs. This is what they do. They win down the stretch. We’ve seen it year after year. They get hot around right now. It’s gonna be a great rest of the season if you’re a Chargers fan...Absolutely we (will) come away with the W in Denver Sunday.”