2021 is in the rearview and 2022's offseason is here.
With that being said, we thought this would be a good time to check in with some people we don't hear from often: the Chargers position coaches.
A Conversation with the Chargers Position Coaches
Next up is secondary coach Derrick Ansley.
Ansley details what it was like having Derwin James play multiple positions while calling defensive plays, how Asante Samuel Jr. can grow in year two, and what he's seen from other DBs including Michael Davis, Nasir Adderley, and Mark Webb.
Take us in to the secondary room, how was it working with that group of guys last season?
Derrick Ansley: It was a great experience. We had a group of guys who worked well together, overcame a lot of obstacles and adversity with injuries but they continued to pull the rope. They played until the final whistle in that [Week 18] Raiders game. They were a joy to coach, easy to coach. Those guys were hungry for knowledge, no ego in the room, everybody was for everybody, and it was one of my most enjoyable years in my 17-year coaching career.
Obviously, this year was huge for Derwin James. What's something you know about him from working with him that we might not know?
Ansley: He's always got a smile on his face. I know you guys see that in the media, but it's real. It's not for the cameras. He loves football, he loves getting better at his craft. He loves his teammates and affecting them in a positive way.
How much did he personally and his skills mean not only to the secondary, but to the whole defense?
Ansley: Everything – and I know that sounds cliché. He has an infectious personality on the grass and in the locker room, in the classroom, on the plane, in the hotel. People gravitate to this guy – and not just the players and coaches, we love being around him – but he's always asking about our kids and our families which is rare.
He can play multiple positions, but outside of the football part, the personality, intangibles, aggressiveness; all those things, he instills those in other people. They may not have the same personality, but he makes those guys better as well.