Defensive coordinator Chuck Brenahan
Q: How difficult was that film session to go over with all the players today?
Coach Bresnahan: It was different because of the short week, so you take selected plays. So what I did was, the way we approach it, we took part of the first half. When you watch it, it is two completely different games. I think that's what is very frustrating to us as a unit and especially us as coaches. You go out and play a pretty good first half, really a pretty darn good first half, and then you can take seven or eight plays that look like you don't know what you are doing, you don't know where you're fitting in the second half and it changes the whole complexion of the game. That falls back on me and it was tough to swallow, but in this league, this game of football, is one you have to put it behind you and move on and come back stronger with that conviction I've talked to you guys about before. The biggest thing I hit them with is that we have to stop riding the roller coaster; we can't be up one week and down the next week. I don't care if it is an Option or a Power O, you have to be able to stop the run and you have to fit into your gaps correctly. They are taking it personally now, and I think that is good, and we all are, as a whole unit.
Q: You won't see anything like the option again this year, but is there still a lot of value in the fundamental gap assignments and such that you'll still get something from the film?
Coach Bresnahan: That's true and not true. The zone read is something we see from our offense every day during training camp, so it's just in a different perspective. It is the same reads and the same fits, but when you now have to account for the extra runner instead of having a quarterback as a neutral player, you now have that 11th player, you have to now commit somebody else to the run, which is what we did, but we did not get the job done and again that falls back on me for the missed assignments and the missed gap fits. We are going to get it corrected and we are going to come back out and we'll be there Thursday night ready to go.
Q: In talking with the players, they seemed kind of like the most disturbing thing was they knew what was coming and were prepared for it but couldn't execute. How do you put a finger on it? Was it the bye week and too much time off?
Coach Bresnahan:Like I said, with this one because you can't really put a finger on it, it's hard to do that, so that's where it comes back to me as the leader of the defense, the guy trying to get them into the spot and coordinate them into executing that defense against that specific play. We didn't get it done, so it falls right back on me. It was no surprise now. That play was worked massive amount of times during the week and we didn't get it done, so again there will be a resolve to not just get that done, but also have an understanding of eight-man or nine-man front defense how if you don't get your gap there is no one behind you and we saw that happen twice on the 60-yard run and the 24-yard run where nobody touches him. That's the stuff that you have to eliminate, and that's we had done that for three games where we had the one run for 24 yards and that's the only one in three games. Then all of a sudden you're giving up what we gave up Sunday and that's disappointing and in a way disturbing and they are taking it the right way.
Q: Another disturbing note was the penalties. How do you continue to address that and eliminate them?
Coach Bresnahan: It has to be eliminated as an entire team. We had 13 or something, four were on defense and two of them were critical -- the roughing the passer, you can look at it and decide what you think, and the personal foul out of bounds, that wasn't close and wasn't a smart play. We have to eliminate that stuff; the facemask is going to happen every now and then, you don't want it to happen, you can't condone it, but at the same time, he's trying to make a play, so we have to eliminate that stuff; it helps us get off the field. But when you are in a 3rd and 20 and you hold somebody to a zero yard gain, but you give them a 1st down from being not very smart, not being intelligent, then that's not good football.
Q: What are the Chargers offensively? What do they like to do?
Coach Bresnahan: It is funny, in the last couple of years everybody looks at it because it is becoming Philip Rivers team that this is a team that just throws the ball all over the place. When you look at this team, this is a team that runs the ball extremely well and extremely efficiently. They don't have the big numbers, but in order to set up the play action pass game that Philip is so good at, the run game is very efficient and very effective. With those two backs that have the potential to be playing Thursday night, we have our work cut out for us and that is first and foremost every week, but this week it is especially important because of the tie in with the play action pass.
Q: From your time with the Raiders before, through your time in Cincinnati to now; how different is the Chargers offense?
Coach Bresnahan: It is different. When I first got here, it was truly LaDainian Tomlinson running the football and the screens and all these things you have to account for. Norv [Turner], since playing against Norv in different places, Norv has a philosophy on offense, so you have to know that he's going to know every tendency you have and he's going to attack those tendencies, so you have to be ready to counter that and come back and match him in kind of a cat and mouse game. It is strategic, but it's fun and that's what it is all about.
Q: You talk about that roller coaster on defense - how much of that do you think is the fact that the secondary has a lot of guys in and out and you don't have Rolando [McClain] in? Or is it still that the 11 guys have to do their job?
Coach Bresnahan: It's funny, I would love to stand up here and tell you 'Oh, we didn't have this guy or that guy.' But you know what it is, I've already told you -- It is truly, on our side of the ball, because it's not a true quarterback, even though Rolando is very important and not having Michael Huff during some of practice and his limit, that is no excuse. The next man up is our philosophy and I believe that on our side of the ball that it has to be that way. You see defenses all across the league that have injuries where people step up and they don't miss a beat. We have to become that type of defense and again, that falls on me.