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Bolts Turn Attention to Jaguars

Win or lose, the San Diego Chargers abide by the 24-hour rule.

One day to celebrate victory or mourn defeat.

Then, it's on to the next game.

That is the mindset the Chargers are taking as they eye Week 2's home opener against the Jacksonville Jaguars.  While the loss to the Chiefs was a brutal way to open the season, the worst thing they can do at this point is allow those emotions to carry into the next game.

The Bolts will look toward their veterans to help move on to Jacksonville.  It's the reason why the Chargers brought in someone like Brandon Mebane, who with 10 years of experience was elected team captain after only a few months in San Diego.  His message to his teammates is a simple one.

"Just stay together. This is only week one. Don't get down on yourself. Don't go pointing fingers. This is a new season. We'll correct it and move on from there. We've got a game next Sunday. That's all you can do."

With 15 games remaining in the season, Danny Woodhead shared a similar message to younger players looking for advice.

"It's tough (to lose like that), but we've got to go back to work," he said.  "It's not how we envisioned it, but we've got to put our heads down and get ready for next week."

Even though the end result was far from favorable, there were some positives they can take away and build upon.   The offensive line kept Philip Rivers upright for the majority of the game, allowing only one sack and three QB hits.  On the ground, they paved the way for Melvin Gordon (14 carries for 57 yards, 4.1 YPC and two TDs) and Danny Woodhead (16 carries for 89 yards and 5.6 ypc).  Orlando Franklin, D.J. Fluker and Joe Barksdale in particular got push up front, allowing Gordon to score the first two touchdowns of his career.

Still, it was more than just Gordon's touchdowns that were impressive.  Number 28 was decisive and confident as he churned out positive yards.  Eliminating negative runs was a major focal point heading into 2016, and his first attempt of the game rolled off 13 straight positive runs. 

"I thought he ran the ball well," Rivers said.  "He was running hard and tough, breaking tackles and protecting the football."

"He was awesome," added Hunter Henry.  "Everybody could see that.  He ran the ball really hard, and you really have to stay on your blocks as long as you can with him running the ball because you know that he'll probably break loose."

On the other side of the ball, Head Coach Mike McCoy was pleased with the performance of the defensive line.  More specifically, he praised Mebane and Corey Liuget.

"The way Corey and Brandon played in there was outstanding," he said.  "That was lights out.  The way those two have worked from day one; bringing Brandon in we've been talking about him and how he helps us.  It showed yesterday….Corey, the way he played, that's the best he's played in a while. And I just told him that.  We need those two guys to play that way, and for other guys to feed off of the way they played."

In the secondary, Jason Verrett continued to haunt Alex Smith.  Verrett notably ended Smith's streak for completions without throwing a pick at 313 attempts a year ago, which was the second longest in NFL history.  On Sunday, The Pro Bowl corner had a memorable interception, wrestling the ball free from Jeremy Maclin.  Meanwhile, Verrett's fellow cornerbacks also give the Chargers reason for optimism. Brandon Flowers stood out with solid coverage and two tackles for loss and Casey Hayward had a pair of passes defensed in his Bolts debut.

There were more than enough reasons for the Chargers to feel good about their prospects moving forward even if the end result was the worst case scenario. Now, the key is to sustain the team's successes for four quarters against the Jaguars to even the record.

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