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Top Quotes | Justin Herbert, Derwin James and Coach Staley Recap Day One of OTAs

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Quarterback Justin Herbert

On his goals for this offseason:

"Just to become a better quarterback and a better teammate. Anything that I can do to help our team win. Whether that's footwork, timing, understanding the run game, the pass protections — there's a lot that goes into it that I can always get better."

On the continuity from last season in the offseason:

"I think the biggest thing is understanding that we're miles ahead of where we were last year. Last year, we were focusing on calling the right plays in the huddle and making sure everyone was lined up in the huddle and getting lined up on the field. Guys have tons of film to look back on from last year and we're farther ahead of where we thought we were going to be. It's always great to add those guys in. We're adding a guard, we're adding another tight end. Those guys are smart and they're able to pick it up really quickly."

On being scheduled for five primetime games:

"I think it's a great opportunity for us. Who doesn't want to go play in primetime games? For us, it's a sign of all the hard work that we've put in over the offseason and especially last year. It didn't go the way that we wanted it to. We didn't make the playoffs and it's unfortunate, but it's all about how we react. To have those five games, I think it's a good sign for our team."

On his leadership:

"Just be yourself. Be genuine and be authentic with everyone and get to know everyone. We added a bunch of guys this offseason. They're great players. They're great teammates. We've done a great job of being in the weight room, in the film room, the meeting room just getting to know each other. When that does come, the fourth down, fourth quarter or whatever it is, we're able to trust each other."

Safety Derwin James

On the start of Organized Team Activities:

"It feels good. Just to be able to go out and get on the grass, like you said, for the first time. To be able to run and catch against our offense, it feels good. We missed it. It feels like it was a long time ago, but I'm just happy to be back out here with the new guys we have out here, too."

On if there's anything he's doing different to bring to the season:

"For myself, just being more of that leader. Being more of that vocal leader that we need on defense and the locker room. Just taking that to another level. Showing up every day and leading a great example for the young guys coming in like JT Woods and Khalil Mack. They're new here. [Mack] is a veteran guy, but just showing them how we do things around here. I feel like that's going to help our team."

On the depth in the secondary:

"Oh, we have a lot of guys. We just broke the huddle down there and there were a lot of guys breaking the huddle down. I feel like we're very strong this year. As you can see, as many DBs as you have, it's going to help."

On moving around the defense in different positions:

"I feel like it's going to help our defense a lot. Being able to blitz more and being able to do a lot more things in the [tackle] box. I'm comfortable in the box, I don't mind it. Just being able to move around, whether it's star, nickel, linebacker or even in the deep part. It's just going to make our team that much stronger."

Head coach Brandon Staley

On how what he 'is trying to accomplish today' is different than this time last year:

"I think it's an excellent question. I think I have a much better sense of who our team is and what our organization's about. I think you have a lot better understanding of everybody that helps make our team what it is, and I think that there's a lot that goes into that. The one thing that always strikes me about the NFL is that you're building something new every single year. You're not building on what you did, you're building something new every single year, and today was the beginning of that. But I know that the people who are here have a lot of confidence in how we do it."

On 'what needs to happen' for the defense 'to become' what he 'wants it to become':

"We have to become a team defense, which is all three levels playing the game the right way from a technique standpoint, from an assignment standpoint, and then them understanding how it all fits together, and this group does. This group that we've joined up with, we're off to a good start with them. I'm excited because it's a deep group, it's an experienced group. I think we have a good mix of veteran and youth, but they're all guys that fit how we want to play. Now, there's a lot of work to do between now and our first game, but today was a good start of it."

On 'short-term goals' for the offseason program:

"In the springtime, you don't have shoulder pads on, you're not playing full speed, contact, tackle, blocking, full-speed to the ground, so what you have to focus on is assignment, technique and effort. I can't measure anyone's toughness right now. I can't measure someone's physicality right now, or their discipline, because we're not playing football. But what we can measure are those three things that I'm talking about. Hopefully, we're able to do that and really focus on the little things that can really build a strong foundation for training camp. That's what we want to do. If you see our work out there, we two-spot a lot of the things so that our young players are getting those chances to grow, to improve, to be ready to compete in training camp, because that's when it's real. What we're trying to do over these next 11 practices is set the foundation for training camp."

On seeing OLBs Khalil Mack and Kyle Van Noy 'on the field in a Chargers uniform for the first time':

"Confidence. Those are real NFL players that you talked about — those two, specifically, that you mentioned. I know what I see out there. Those two are the two of the best players that we could have joined up with this offseason. It was awfully good to see them out there."

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