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Top Quotes | Ansley Settling Into New Role as Defensive Coordinator 

TQ 05.15

Take a look at top quotes from Chargers Defensive Coordinator Derrick Ansley, Chargers Special Teams Coordinator Ryan Ficken and defensive lineman Sebastian Joseph-Day's media availability on Monday:

Defensive Coordinator Derrick Ansley

On his transition to the role of Defensive Coordinator:

"It's been natural. We have a great staff. [Head] Coach [Brandon] Staley surrounded us with really good men, guys that have been in the league for a long time. We have a good mix of youth with the young guys, as well, so it's been natural."

On the rookie class of defensive players:

"Those guys had a really good two days of Rookie Minicamp. They're all eager. They're all in the hotel living in now, but if the rules would have allowed them to stay in the facility, they would be here, too [laughter]. We like those kids. All of them have a unique skillset. We're looking for good things."

On the addition of LB Eric Kendricks and what Kendricks brings to the unit:

"Experience, for one. Leadership, he has been there and done that. He has seen a lot of ball, played a lot of ball. He's been a calming presence for the room over the first two weeks of Phase Two."

On adjustments to his responsibility and working with Staley:

"There's a little bit of change, me overseeing the defense with him and making sure that we're all aligned and working in the same direction. It's just getting in wherever I need to be at, whether that's with the defensive line, those guys on the edge, or the inside linebackers. Not a drastic change, day-to-day within the environment, but there are some things that I can do that affect the whole group."

On added responsibilities:

"Presentations in the installation meetings. Being in different rooms, not just being with the secondary all of the time. Implementing my personality into some of those groups, which I think we can do going forward."

On his personality:

"Aggressive, calm. I'm whatever our players need me to be. Some guys need the rah-rah, some guys need you to be calm. I'm adjustable; whatever the players need from me, that's what I'll do."

Special Teams Coordinator Ryan Ficken

Opening statement:

"Just to open it up, I'm really excited about the guys. Not only about our current players on the roster, I think I'm really excited actually about the young talent that we're bringing in here. We're looking for some good competition. We're ready to kick off this offseason here next week with the practices. With that, I'll go ahead and open it up."

On finding a dual returner in the draft:

"It is rare, but I'll say, especially the way the college game is now — they don't catch as many punts anymore. A lot of hit and rolls. A lot of times, you don't see them returning. The success that he was able to have catching those punts at that level and returning was really attractive for us. As a dual returner, especially with the kickoff return the way that it's going in college right now, you don't have those returns. We're very fortunate to be able to land him as a dual returner. We're excited for him to be able to compete for both of those positions."

On a kicker competition with K Cameron Dicker and K Dustin Hopkins:

"I'm excited. They had a great year, both of them. Obviously, Dustin was doing a great job before he went ahead and had the misfortune of getting injured. That's how every roster is structured. You want to have that competition at every position. That's what's exciting because [Head] Coach [Brandon] Staley and [General Manager] Tom [Telesco], they've structured the roster exactly that way, and that's what brings out the best in these guys. I'm really excited. They've done a great job the last couple of weeks. We're going on our third week of Phase Two. Really, they start kicking in front of the team just so they can show the work that they've been putting into this offseason so they can go ahead and compete and win that battle."

On P JK Scott:

"I was very excited [for him to come back]. I think the whole organization was, too. We're very fortunate to be able to bring him back, have the organization support him. He believes in the organization, too. We feel he had a really good year, but he complemented our unit and what we were trying to achieve as a unit. You saw the success that we were able to have. Again, the success that we had last year — you talk about field goals, punt returning, punting and these situations — all of that now is behind us. It's now what can we do moving forward? We have a higher standard now for us, and we have to go out there, work and compete again."

On entering year two as the team's special teams coordinator:

"I wouldn't say comfortable would be the word for me because we're always going to have a sense of urgency in what we do. Last year doesn't mean anything. Moving forward, we didn't do enough to go ahead and win the games and get the Super Bowl trophy here. At the end of the day, I'm very excited about this group. I understand some of what these players are and what they're made of, the veterans that have been here. I had to utilize them a little bit and put them in better situations to be successful, so that part I feel very comfortable. Other than that, no, we're starting from scratch, day one. We have to make sure we pump up the urgency and get the most out of all of these guys, even the guys that were here last year and the young guys in here coming forward."

Defensive Lineman Sebastian Joseph-Day

On the potential of the team in 2023:

"I think that we can go as far as we want to go. At the end of the day, we proved to everyone that we can go as far as we want to go. The only people that are stopping us are us. That's why I'm very excited for this year and a lot of people are excited for this year."

On Morgan Fox re-signing with the team:

"I was very excited. That's my dog. I've been playing with Fox now, this is going to be Year 6, I think, of playing with him? Morgan is my dog, man. It's easy playing with him. I know what he is thinking, he knows what I'm thinking. Not much needs to be said out there. It definitely helps."

On using the loss to Jacksonville as a positive:

"In your approach, re-evaluating yourself as a player. You re-evaluate what you need to work on and improve on, the way you train, how hard to go. Honestly, I just think, no matter what, it's always going to be that thing behind your back that pushes you to never let whatever your part is in this team sport, whatever your part is, to make sure that you never allow yourself to let your teammates down or the man next to you down. At the end of the day, you never want to feel that feeling again."

On the 'biggest difference' toward improvement in the run defense:

"I think that the biggest difference is everyone being on the same page. I think us having that experience together, because now everyone knows what excitation is, I think having Eric [Kendricks] here, as well, it's definitely going to help with the communication on things. At the end of the day, it's just coming together as a team and using those experiences, learning from last year and the mistakes that we made, because run defense is everyone. I feel like a lot of people don't really know – some people are like, 'Oh, it's the D-line.' It's everyone, it really is everyone, and it's a mindset. I think that having Eric back there is really going to help with the mindset, help with the communication, help with people getting in the right spots faster by dissecting what he sees."

On Ansley's transition to Defensive Coordinator:

"It's been great. He has this calm urgency about him that I really enjoy. It's intense, but it's calm. It's really interesting. I really like his mentality. He's bringing a new energy. I think that it's everything that we need right now. We need to be able to stay calm, but also have urgency to be able to do our job. I like it."

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