Coach Knapp Media Session

On quarterback situation this week: "This does bring back memories for me because I've had a mobile-quarterback and a pocket-quarterback when I was in Atlanta, with Mike Vick and Matt Schaub. It's a very similar mindset for me in that you have to have a little bit of a game plan for both available. As [Dennis Allen] has mentioned, what we're trying to do is get both guys ready. Both guys need reps right now because they really didn't have any reps going into last week when Carson [Palmer] got hurt. It's always the starter getting reps, so want to have both ready. We'll know after tomorrow's practice, but we've been splitting the reps both. We have to have a little bit of a game plan for both available."

On if he really does not know who is going to start Sunday: "Correct. We want to be able to have both guys have a chance to compete for the job."

On what has changed for Terrelle Pryor to be considered for the starting spot: "I'll say this, for a young quarterback, any young quarterback, I'd much rather have him get some kind of reps during the week. Then I'll feel better for him to play in a game on Sunday. To put a young guy in, and have no reps with the first group at all during the season is very hard to do. It's hard enough as it is with the backup, who doesn't get any reps that's a veteran, and it's really not fair to a rookie to do that to him on a game such as what played out last week. It's so hard for a young guy to jump in without any reps of your offense, only doing scout-team, and then play right away."

On if Pryor's biggest challenge is the fundamentals or getting in and out of the huddle or recognizing defenses: "It's all of the above because there's so much that you can't teach off the field, in the classroom, that they have to experience. Those kinds of things are the scenarios. The footwork has to be played out with a pass rush in front of him, instead of versus air. The different looks of the defense that you can't always card-up or create for him in practice, that just comes through experience. It's all of those things that have to go play out for any young player at any position, but especially quarterback because there's a lot more going on in their mind. Those game-experience reps, you can't match, you can't create."

On if it would be beneficial to give Pryor that chance this week: "It would definitely help, no doubt."

On if this game will be a determining factor in Pryor future: "I think it's just one equation to the future for him. For any player to be judged off one game, I think, is not fair. I think it's got to be a cumulative effect during the season, and through all the games, preseason and regular season."

On the Chargers and changes since Week 1: "Their blitz has gone up quite a bit. In fact, when you saw them against the Jets last week, against a young quarterback Greg McElroy, they blitzed quite a bit. We're anticipating to have a heavy-blitz game from their defense. Most 3-4 teams usually have a little more blitz package available. I still think [Shaun] Phillips is playing outstanding outside as a pass rusher, and they've got good, veteran, defenders back there in [Antoine] Cason and [Quentin] Jammer at corners. We've been emphasizing to both our quarterbacks that you've got to make sure that you're not staring down a route because they will squat and jump on plays. They're playing very aggressively."

On how Matt Leinart played on Sunday: "He didn't play as well as I would have liked. I wish his footwork would have been better on a consistent basis. It's hard for any backup quarterback to come in on short notice without any reps, but that comes with the job, and you've got to know that going in. He struggled a little bit with the footwork on consistency. He had it sometimes, but not all the time."

On Leinart's decision-making: "I was disappointed on the interception in the two-minute drill. I wish that would not have occurred. He made some other good third-down decisions that kept us in drives a lot. That was the one glaring mistake that I saw. I wish he would have just checked the ball down."

On his incomplete pass on a fourth down: "I would have liked to see him try to give the receiver a chance down the sideline. It was a tight window, but just try to give it a chance for us or nobody, facemask or higher."

On how much more emphasis there will be on the running game this week: "Good point. I definitely want to emphasize the run game. Carson gives us the ability, obviously, to keep the teams honest. I was very pleased with the progress of the run game going into last week. We made some great strides. We had our best rushing performance the week before. We did not do as well this last week at Carolina. I expect us to get back to where we were going into last week's game with improvement."

On if Carolina keyed in on the run more with Palmer out: "We did not execute as well. It was really all seven of the guys, the O-line, tight end, and lead back."

On getting stopped on plays run to the outside: "What happened the week before? See, in our own self-scout, going into last week we were second in the NFL in third-and-one conversions, we were doing really good. In my mind as the play caller, the last one we called the week before was a straight-ahead dive with the lead back and we got stuffed. I went back and looked at our tendencies, and we had done that quite a bit. So we took a calculated risk on the first third-and-one to show the quick-hitter to Marcel [Reece] inside and try to pitch Darren [McFadden] outside. Greg Hardy made a great play as a defensive end and stopped the flip play. That play has been used time and again by a variety of teams in short yardage to try and influence a quick dive and get outside; it didn't work this time."

On execution versus predictability in third down play-calling: "There's a balance. There are certain plays and certain things that your offense may do real well, and at that point maybe that play was perfect for them. I like the speed that we have at running back. I think at times it's worth taking a shot outside with Darren's speed. In fact, when I was here before, that got us a touchdown on a fourth-and-one inside the 10. Part of it is tendencies and part of it is what you do well. Like I said, going into last week's game we were second in the NFL in third-and-one conversions. I felt like this was a time to take a calculated risk."

On Tony Bergstrom: "Just like we're talking about with a young quarterback, he's going to go through some growing pains like any new player. I feel good about him. I like what I've seen in practice, but I've also seen the rookie mistakes, and I know this might show up in a game. I'm looking forward to getting him some reps to see him play live if he has to play. He's prepared. He's one of the first guys in the building. When asked questions during meetings, he's always on top of his information and right assignments. I feel like he's ready to play. He's going to go through some growing pains, but he's certainly earned the right to be on the field."

On if he can find ways to help Bergstrom out: "With the protections and certain run game and that's one thing we've been doing in our game plan anyways; because we've had to split the reps, we've made sure not to have too high of a volume so that we can not have as many mental errors going in because we don't have as much volume to go in so therefore they can execute a lot faster."

On San Diego's 11 sacks against Jets QB Greg McElroy: "Some of it is related to the quarterback play. Some of it is related to the scheme by the Chargers. I think it was just one of those anomaly games where it got out of hand. Some of it could have been taken care of on the offensive side of the ball."

On how different a game plan would be with Leinart or Pryor:"Fortunately I have a background where I've had to go through that in Atlanta. Some of this will be driven off of Matt being a pocket-passer, so we will have a decent amount of plays for him available that way. There's some carryover that both can do in the pocket, and then there's some of these plays where Terrelle's athletic skills can be used, maybe move him outside the pocket, with a little deception and utilize some of his athleticism outside. That's where some input into the game plan went based on his athletic ability."

On if he would go into the game planning to use both quarterbacks: "Yes, possibly we could use both. We used both last week didn't we?"

On if they could possibly use both quarterbacks evenly: "It's possible, yeah."

On why they haven't used Pryor in the red zone more: "There's a fine line of how many reps you want to use. Our biggest issue is that I don't think we've been down there enough, that's our biggest issue. We had actually made some progress up to 0-for-two last week in the red zone. The fact that we haven't been down there as much, I need to devote more time to getting us down there. So, third downs have been more of an emphasis for us to try to work on so we haven't developed as big of a red zone package because of that issue."

On if the running difficulties show up the most inside the red zone: "I was hoping to get a fourth [rushing touchdown] last week, but unfortunately we had a holding call. It is definitely a tighter crowd to get it in there. I'll go back to our volume. We haven't had enough reps down there. I want to get down there more so we can have a better judge of the sample in that phase of the game."

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