Take a look at top quotes from Chargers Head Coach Brandon Staley, quarterback Justin Herbert and more from their Week 6 media availability:
Head Coach Brandon Staley
On the Cowboys:
"I see a team that's won 12 games two years in a row and have been deep into the playoffs. A team that has some of the best point differential in the league. They've had a lot of big wins this season. They had a tough game [last week], just like all of us do, but this is a very complete football team on offense, defense and in the kicking game. It's a team full of premium players who have experience together and an outstanding coaching staff."
On the secondary:
"We believe in that group. That group is where we've played our best football as a team since we've been here. We have full trust in those guys. Those guys have played really well together. Now, they get to play together full-time."
On having an 'early' bye week:
"You can control when your bye is, all you have to do is take advantage of it. That's what we tried to do: get as much rest as we can and be ready to go for this week. I thought, based on who was out in that Vegas game, that it came at a good time for us. But, no matter when you're bye is, things even out in the end, so you just have to take it as it comes. It's about Dallas this week, having a good week of practice and making sure our group is ready for Monday night."
On Offensive Coordinator Kellen Moore's 'familiarity' with the Cowboys and 'how that might factor in' this week:
"It's just the game within the game. It's not uncommon in the league where you have matchups where you know the other side a little bit. Outstanding coaching staffs on both sides. But, it's going to be about the players on the field, the players and how they play. There are going to be two good teams on that field on Monday night."
Offensive Coordinator Kellen Moore
On his familiarity with the Cowboys:
"Football is football, at the end of the day. There are a few concepts, probably, that we run that they run, that our DBs will have familiarity with. There will be some other stuff, obviously, that is different than what we do. If they have a question, you're available, but we've all been a part of plenty of games where coaches and players have commonalities and, usually, that stuff is kind of blown out of proportion."
On 'where is the offense' and 'where it needs to go' following the bye week:
"I think that we have protected the ball pretty well, for the most part. I think that's always a big part of this game. I think we're handling some situational football. I think it's just playing consistent football. We've had a few games where you have a few lulls. That happens, especially early in the season, you kind of have these up-and-down type things. I think we really have a good understanding of who we are, from a personnel standpoint, how we can maybe best utilize our guys. Hopefully, we can put those guys in a better position to succeed moving forward."
On the offense's performance in the red zone thus far:
"I think the red zone has been going well. Red zone is always going have ups and downs, a little bit, through a season. Tennessee was our one low spot, but I think that our guys are doing a really good job down there. I think just continuing to play football. Sometimes redzone turns in this big old science project. I think part of the emphasis is just that we're playing ball down there. When you get into the red zone, there's still first and second down, there's still third downs, there are a lot of just traditional situations, the space is just different. You have to, obviously, plan accordingly for that, but I think that our guys have done a nice job down there."
Defensive Coordinator Derrick Ansley
On 'self-scouting' during the bye week:
"We worked on us, mostly. Checked our explosive plays, that's been at an extremely high rate. Just checking why those things are happening. Also, things that we can control and we can fix. We studied that, studied the penalties. Continue to look at our run structures and our cover systems, make sure those are all tied together. Then, we took a look at the league, the big plays. Stay on the cutting edge of the league and seeing what's out there, seeing what's ahead of us. Really, trying to make us better."
On matchups in the Monday game:
"Well again, it starts with the quarterback. [Cowboys QB] Dak [Prescott], everything goes through him. He does a really good job of controlling the pace. Does a really good job at the line of scrimmage getting them in and out of structures. The receivers are really explosive. It's going to be a big challenge for us. Those guys have been really good for five years now, been consistent. We have to do a really good job of negating their firepower. Staying on top of routes, tackling, hitting and just playing our brand of ball."
On the secondary:
"You have a lot of guys that have played a lot of ball together back there. When they play together, they've been successful. We're glad that we've got some continuity back there, some guys that have played a lot. [CB Asante] Zont [Samuel Jr.] has played a lot, [CB] Mike [Davis], [Safety Derwin] DJ [James Jr.], [DB Ja'Sir] Ja Taylor is coming into his own. Those guys are really working hard. We're excited about the challenge and moving forward."
Special Teams Coordinator Ryan Ficken
On defending Cowboys KR/WR KaVontae Turpin:
"It's a challenge. But the thing that is encouraging about these guys ... they're going against Turpin and they say, 'We want a challenge.' They want to go out there and make a difference."
On Chargers WR Simi Fehoko:
"What I love about Simi is that he's very versatile in everything he does. He can play inside, outside, play with length, strength, speed. The guy is very instinctive and has awareness with how he plays. He recalls information and I love having him here. He's exactly what you're looking for in a special teams wide receiver."
Quarterback Justin Herbert
On facing the Cowboys:
"We actually haven't seen too much pressure from them all year. They do what they do and they've done a really good job of that. They're able to kind of switch it up. They're really well-coached. They've obviously got some really talented guys on that side of the ball. Whether they do pressure or whether they don't, we have to be ready for what they do. They're about as talented as it gets. We'll have to watch as much film as we can to have any shot on Monday."
On Cowboys LB Micah Parsons:
"He's one of those guys that you have to be aware of wherever he is on the field. He's as good as it gets. Whether he's on the left side, right side, inside or outside at linebacker, they do a great job of moving him around and doing a bunch of different things. He's a very talented player. He plays incredibly hard. We have to be aware of him wherever he is on the field."
On the red zone offense:
"I think there's a lot of room for improvement, as well. I think we have done some good things on offense in the red zone. It's important to score touchdowns down there when you get those shots. I think we've done a good job of that, but we can always be better. I could be better at quarterback, complete more passes in the red zone to be sure that we're moving the chains, but I've liked what I've seen so far."
Safety Derwin James, Jr.
On defensive continuity:
"It builds rhythm. As a player, I feel like the more you're in there with the same guys, it's going to build that rhythm and that trust that we're going to need. The sky's the limit for us if we come together and play the way we need to play."
On facing Dallas:
"We need to come out and play. You can't look at the vulnerabilities. I'm pretty sure they're going to be pissed off about how they played [last week]. We just have to come out and play. We know we're going to get their best. They're going to get our best, too."
On the early bye week:
"It was very beneficial. Definitely beneficial for me. I feel like I healed up pretty well over the bye, for sure. It helped get some of my guys back out here on the team that we're going to need to carry us for the rest of the season. It's going to be fun."
Outside Linebacker Khalil Mack
On getting back on the field following his big performance in Week 4:
"That's my mission regardless. I love the game of football. It's about coming out here and getting better every day. Not worried about last game, just getting ready for the next one."
On Cowboys QB Dak Prescott:
"Dak is a special player, just understanding his leadership qualities and his toughness. Knowing what they're capable of, we have to be ready.
Running back Austin Ekeler
On how it felt to be back at practice:
"I feel good. It's taken a little bit to get back, just to being around football and reacting to stuff, things like that, but it's something we'll look into this week and be ready to go."
On facing a Cowboys team coming off a loss:
"We're all playing as hard as we possibly can so for me, I'm not worried about their scenario, I'm worried about us coming to show up and play and making sure we're putting a high-level of play on the field. Regardless if they're ticked off or not, I know they're going to play hard."
Defensive lineman Sebastian Joseph-Day
On defensive mindset
"I just try to look at it, and I think everyone's mentality in here, is we just try to take it one play at a time. I remember that Vikings game, I was just telling everyone, 'One play at a time, we just need one stop'. I just think that's the mindset of this team. We don't look to far ahead, we don't don't dwell too much on the past. Obviously we learn from the past and the mistakes that we've made, but we don't dwell too much on that. We just try to stay present and just chop wood and stay in the present where we are right now. I think that's helped us these past two weeks, but again we got to continue to stay in the present and chop wood. We got a great team in front of us, great O-Line in front of us. That's kind of our mindset."
Running back Joshua Kelley
On Monday's game:
"It's a big deal. Win a game and we're above .500. If we don't, we're chasing it again. It's a big game and we're playing a good team. You saw what happened last week so they're coming in hungry [after a 42-10 loss]. They're going to have something to prove but so do we. We know what's at stake in this league every single week. We just have to come out and play hard. Just play our game."
Center Will Clapp
On being able to step in at center:
"It's just how you prepare every week, every game week thinking that I could be in at any moment so you always prepare like you're a start every play. That way, when I get into this situation my preparation is the same and every week just feels like it normally does."
Safety Dean Marlowe
On secondary and defense stepping up in Week 4:
"I feel like Coach Staley did a good job all week. The NFL is all about next man up mentality. There should never be a drop off from the starter to third stringer. When you don't have depth and you see a drop off, I don't know how excited teams are about that but I think every organization tries to do a good job bringing guys in who can play. This is a 100 percent injury rate game and at any moment, anybody can jump in and start just like me and Raheem did. Other than that it's everyday mentality. If you have that mentality that you're going to start every week, whether you are or you're not, you're going to be in good shape."
Safety Raheem Layne
On returning from the bye week:
"Everybody is ready to get back out here. Feels good being back with the guys, getting a vibe. That's one of the coolest things about a locker room that people might not get a chance to really catch, how really connected and cool a locker room can be. Here, we always got a vibe out there. The music's going, we're laughing, but we still handle the business so it's cool."
Secure your Chargers Mini Plan today! Click here to learn more.