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Jerry Tillery 'a Huge Piece' to Chargers' Defense, Interior Pass Rush in 2020


The Athletic's Daniel Popper joined last Thursday's episode of “Chargers Weekly” to discuss intriguing storylines ahead of training camp.

Among the topics: Tyrod Taylor's ability to take care of the football, sorting out a crowded secondary, defensive tackle Jerry Tillery entering year two and more. Highlights and timestamps are below.

The Chargers' approach to the offseason (1:00)

"The one thing that Tom Telesco, Anthony Lynn [and] everyone's sort of been hammering home is that everyone's in the same boat here around the league, and there will be one team that does this virtual offseason thing better than every other team – and that team will give themselves a built-in advantage for this season, which I thought was a great way to approach it. … You got to figure out a way to be productive during this time, and by all accounts the Chargers have been productive and have been able to get some stuff done."

Tyrod Taylor's ability to protect the football (6:44)

"Of all quarterbacks in the history of the NFL with at least 1,000 passing attempts, Tyrod Taylor is second all-time in interception rate at 1.5 percent. The only guy better than him in the history of the NFL with 1,000 or more passing attempts is Aaron Rodgers. So, like, we're not talking about a guy who's like pretty good at protecting the football. We're talking about a guy who's like historically great at not throwing interceptions."

The addition of Linval Joseph, plus Jerry Tillery entering year two (18:17)

"It's sort of interesting because Brandon Mebane was that sort of anchor, veteran; guys relied on him for advice, both on and off the field. He was that patriarchal figure for the defensive line room. The interesting thing about bringing Linval Joseph in is he has the same kind of experience, but he's much more of a pass-rushing threat. And so, you wonder if maybe he can teach Jerry Tillery a little bit more about how to get after the quarterback than maybe Brandon Mebane did. Whereas Brandon Mebane is such a stout run [stopper], maybe he was able to teach Tillery things about dealing with double teams against the run game. But, I think Jerry is going to be a huge piece of this defense, and very important to whether or not this defense reaches its potential in 2020."

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