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Chargers OC Kellen Moore Building Early Connection with Coaches, Players

FTP 05.02

Below are three takeaways from Chargers Offensive Coordinator Kellen Moore from Monday's media session:

Moore settling in with Bolts

On Monday, the Bolts took the field for Phase Two of their voluntary offseason program — this time with coaches on the field.

It was a step closer to Organized Team Activities — a chance for Chargers Offensive Coordinator Kellen Moore to continue settling in with his new team. The Chargers hired Moore in January after he spent the past four seasons in the same role in Dallas.

"It's been really good. It's been really fun just being able to collaborate," Moore said on Monday. "Obviously, with coaches, initially. Now, that we have the players here, just really starting to build that.

"It's been a lot of fun. It's been great kind of connecting with these guys," Moore added. "Today was the first day on the field to actually do some field stuff. We actually had a football out there. That was good."

Moore has spent the last couple months working to familiarize himself with both the offense and the coaching staff.

He raved about the collaboration process with Chargers Head Coach Brandon Staley, noting how Staley has helped the transition in numerous areas.

"Brandon has been awesome. He's been really, really good," Moore said. "I've just loved working together, collaborating on this thing and kind of building this offense toward 2023. Again, kind of embracing all of the good things that are going on and then, hopefully, kind of being able to add some different things that can hopefully help us as we go on in our future here.

"Brandon has been awesome through the whole transition, through the draft process," Moore added. "It's been a lot of fun."

The Los Angeles Chargers today agreed to terms with Kellen Moore as the team's offensive coordinator.

In addition to working with Staley, Moore mentioned how important it's been to build that trust and relationships with a new coaching staff and players.

With Moore, quarterbacks coach Doug Nussmeier and offensive assistant Phil Serchia all joining a coaching staff and roster that has largely remained the same, a lot of the process has also been building relationships so they can continue to develop as the weeks progress.

"Really, ultimately, the roster we were pretty much able to bring everyone back from last year, for the most part," Moore said. "Walking in that room today, other than Doug, Phil and myself, the three coaches that were new, everyone else was part of 2022.

"It has been really fun just to kind of start building those relationships," Moore added. "I think that's the biggest thing about this thing, is that we're doing this thing together. As we find each other, start understanding each other and start working together, I think, develop this thing and build it."

Since Moore's arrival, one of the ways he's continued to learn more and more about the roster has been through the offensive position coaches. With some of the staff having spent multiple years with the Chargers, it has allowed Moore to get a crash course on the roster.

It is all a part of the process as the Bolts continue to have their eyes set on 2023.

"I think the really cool part is listening to the position coaches, initially, because those guys have spent a lot of time with these guys over the course of the last few years," Moore said. "Really, understanding where their position is, getting to know some of the players and then, ultimately, kind of setting our eyes on 2023.

"That was our whole plan from the beginning," Moore added. "It's been really, really good."

Early thoughts on Johnston

As Moore and the staff continue to work towards the 2023 season, their offense got another weapon in the mix this past weekend.

The Chargers selected Quentin Johnston in the first round (No. 21 overall) of last week's draft. Johnston gives the Bolts a big, explosive wide receiver from TCU and another playmaker for Justin Herbert.

"Brandon is this defensive guy and he's drafting these offensive guys, I like this," Moore said with a smile. "It's a lot of fun."

With Johnston, the Chargers are getting a big receiver that has uncommon traits for someone his size. At 6-foot-3 and 208 pounds, Moore broke down what made Johnston so special and expressed his excitement for the new addition.

"Q really stood out for us as we went through the process," Moore said. "Everyone kind of sees the measurables, the size as far as the height and the weight. What he did for TCU from his versatility, I thought, was really, really special. His ability to kind of catch-and-run, he was a fly-sweep guy.

"He got the ball in a lot of different ways," Moore added. "You saw a lot of versatility in his game that maybe, initially, someone may not have necessarily anticipated. We were really excited that he was there and available for us."

Get a behind-the-scenes look at 2023 first-round pick Quentin Johnston's first day with the Bolts!

Johnston was dynamic at TCU with the ball in his hands, leading the Horned Frogs in receiving yards each of the three years. In his last season, he was second in college football last year with 8.9 yards after the catch per reception and finished the season with 60 receptions for 1,069 yards — the most by a TCU player since 2018.

Anytime he gets the ball, Johnston is a home-run threat, something he showed in the College Football Playoff Semifinal against Michigan. In that game, in which he was named Offensive MVP, Johnston caught a ball across the middle of the field and took it 76 yards for a touchdown.

Moore knows how much Johnston is capable of bringing to the Bolts offense, whether it be across the middle of the field or vertically.

"There's a vertical element of it that we're really excited about," Moore said. "With Q [Johnston], just the size, catch radius. He goes up and gets the ball downfield.

"You can do it however you need to do it, whether it's size, catch radius, speed," Moore added. "He definitely brings a vertical element to us."

Moore will have a lot of weapons and skillsets to work with in the receiver room, as Johnston now joins Keenan Allen, Mike Williams, Josh Palmer and more.

"To have Q [Johnston] join that receiver room with all the talent that's in there in those guys and the experience, I think it's going to be awesome for him because he's going to learn so much from those guys," Moore said. "It's going to allow us to put these guys in different roles and different positions to allow them to be successful.

"No one is ever going to complain about having a receiver room like this room, where you have all of this talent," Moore added. "I think we're really, really excited."

Boise State connection

Make that another Boise State Bronco in the building now.

The Bolts selected defensive tackle Scott Matlock in the sixth round out of Boise State, Moore's alma mater. Moore had one of the best quarterback careers in the history of college football at Boise, including going 50-3 as a starter.

Matlock was excited to join the Chargers and Moore, whom he called the "Boise State GOAT."

This got a laugh out of Moore, who joked about finding a way to get more players from Boise State in the building.

"He's awesome. I got a chance to meet him when he was here for his visit," Moore said. "He's a stud. I'm glad we have a couple of Broncos. I think we have two now [Matlock and DL David Moa]. We need to get a couple of more somehow. We'll figure out a way."

And yes, the two did take a picture during Matlock's visit in the pre-draft process.

Matlock was an all-conference tight end, among other positions, in high school before he became a full-time defensive tackle in Boise. Still, he made sure to put those tight end skills to use in college, catching two touchdown passes in goal line situations.

Moore is well aware of this, as both Matlock and current Boise State Head Coach Andy Avalos have mentioned it to him.

"Oh yes, he's already told me," Moore said. "Andy Avalos immediately sent them to me. He's the head coach at Boise. He sent them to me as soon as [Matlock] got drafted.

"For you guys concerned about the tight end position, maybe we have something there," Moore said with a laugh.

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