Take a look at top quotes from Chargers Defensive Coordinator Derrick Ansley, center Corey Linsley and cornerback Asante Samuel, Jr.'s media availability on Wednesday:
Defensive Coordinator Derrick Ansley
On DB Ja'Sir Taylor's development as an inside cover defender:
"He's mature past his age. He's a very quiet kid, very observant. He understands the big picture. He's working hard, just like how the other Stars are working hard. That is going to be an interesting battle once we get to camp."
On players describing him as 'high energy' and how he characterizes his demeanor:
"You have to read the climate of the day. Whatever those guys need me to be, that is what I'll be. When we have a not-so-great day, then I need to pump a little more energy into them. When the players have that energy, then we need to kind of take a step back. There's an even ground there."
On if he has 'changed' at all with the promotion to defensive coordinator:
"Not much. I think that's one of the reasons that Coach [Staley] trusted me with this leadership role, because I am myself. He wants me to be myself. He encourages that, to do things the way that we see it, and making sure that we lead the right way. Every day is a different day, so you have to come in here, reset, and be what those guys need you to be every day."
On LB Eric Kendricks:
"Another guy that has provided a lot of leadership. He is calm out there. He has played a lot of football. He is good for the LB room. [Linebackers] Coach [Jeff] Howard and [Front Seven Specialist] Coach [Mike] Hiestand, they've taken a liking to him. He has done a really good job running the green dot in there."
On if he has 'noticed anything different' with OLB Joey Bosa this offseason:
"I have a lot of credit for our front four, five, six guys that are working up there. Those guys go over to their side and work nonstop, the whole practice. The amount of fundamentals that those guys are getting, it's incredible. My hat is off to them and how they are working. When the DBs are doing 7-on-7, they are constantly working on fundamentals, and Joey [Bosa] has been right in the middle of that — working on his hands, working on his block protection, doing a really good job with his drops. That whole group — [OLBs] Chris Rumph [II], Khalil [Mack], Tuli [Tuipulotu], all of those guys do a really good job of developing their craft."
Center Corey Linsley
On the movement along the offensive line:
"It's good. I think [G] Zion [Johnson] said he feels more natural at that position [of left guard]. I think [OL] Jamaree [Salyer] is steady Eddy. He doesn't bat an eye no matter what. Shoot, we asked him to play left tackle last year four games in or whatever. He went in a rolled. Throughout camp, it will be the communication, the fits and the combos and stuff. Those guys inside, they're workhorses, man. Obviously, we're glad to get [T] Rashawn [Slater] back and [T Trey] Pip [Pipkins], glad to get him back as well and re-sign him. Hopefully, the goal through camp is to build that continuity. I feel like we communicate really well. Now, it's just about getting the feel for everything down."
On leading an offensive line group of young players:
"There are good aspects the other way, too. When we had [former G] Oday [Aboushi], [former G/T Michael] Scho [Schofield III] and those guys, it was awesome to have, and [former G] Matt [Fieler] — the other veteran presence in the room and on the field. These guys, they really do operate like vets. We'll have to learn through stuff, but when it comes to not freaking out on the field and just being cool, calm and collected, Rashawn [Slater] and [Trey] Pip [Pipkins], obviously, and the guys next to me who I directly communicate with the most, those guys do an excellent job of that. None of the 'yips,' the rookie jitters or anything. Those guys have been great.
On what he can take from previous years to help propel the team this year:
"I mean, no, we never got it done. I can tell you why, looking back, and same thing with last year. That Jacksonville game, when we look at it, it was a culmination of a lot of things. We understand why it happened now. We have to improve. We have to make those adjustments and I feel like we are. At the same time, it's just going to take [time]. I know there are guys that, when I walked into the locker room in Green Bay, 90 percent of those guys had been on the Super Bowl team. That standard that they set, that's what I'm trying to do here and what all the leaders of our team are trying to do. We expect to do this. We expect to make the playoffs. We expect to get to the championship. I feel like we have done a good job. [Head] Coach [Brandon] Staley and top-down. We've done a good job of those are our expectations. This is the standard. We just have to go and do it."
Cornerback Asante Samuel, Jr.
On the development of the defense and the influence of Defensive Coordinator Derrick Ansley:
"We're all trying to get together, build chemistry and stuff. Have fun with each other. We're trying to build as a team, build our chemistry, and just have fun. Taking it one day at a time."
On LB Eric Kendricks:
"He just brings a lot of experience. A great guy, a great playmaker. He's one of the best linebackers in the league right now. Just blessed to be a part of the team and blessed to have him. Just have to try to keep learning from all of the older guys."
On areas of improvement for the defense as a unit:
"I feel like we really didn't have too much to work on after last year, we just have to build as a team. It's a team game, we can't really blame one specific spot. Have to keep building on what we did well. We don't look at the bad, we just look at the good and try to build off of that."
On if he has 'noticed any changes' in how Ansley leads the unit, now as defensive coordinator:
"No, I feel like he's the same guy. He comes with high energy. He wants the best for his players. He just wants us to compete at a high level every day, and that's what I feel like we're doing. We just have to get better each day. It's a grind, it's a long season."
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