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Transcripts: Press Conference (11/24)


Opening Statement: "Hey everybody. It's good to see you guys. I appreciate you being out. We're getting ready to travel. We'll be in the air soon, and we're looking forward to playing a very important AFC game. So, what questions do you have?"

It seems like four wide receivers have been in and out of practice this week. I know it's not specifically every player, but overall, at wide receiver, do you feel comfortable with the health of the guys right now?*_(Jamison Hensley)_* "I do. I feel very good about the health of the guys, and we should be in good shape."

We talked about prepping for star players on offense and defense, but WR Derius Davis is No. 1 in punt return yardage right now. The Chargers have a really good punt return team and special teams as a whole. What's the preparation been like for that entire unit?*_ (Kyle Phoenix) _*"It's been good. We've worked hard at it. It's not just the returner – that's a big part of it – but it's also the rushes, the blockers in front of [those] rushers [and] all the different things that go with it. And not just that phase too, it's a good special teams unit. It seems like everybody is, so we've prepared for that just like we always do, and [we will] try to go out there [and] have a positive impact on the game."

With this sort of extended mini break here, the guys are fresh and feeling really good about going out to the West Coast, I would assume.*_(Jim Forner) _*"Yes, we're just excited to go play the game. The focus has been on that. The guys have worked really hard. I think they have taken care of themselves physically throughout the stretch that we've been on, but really, there's only one thing we're thinking about, [and] that's game time on Sunday night." 

The Chargers have the most strip sacks in the league over the last three years. How important is ball security especially for QB Lamar Jackson? How much of a concern is that?*_(Noah Trister) _*"The Chargers have a ton of fumble recoveries. They're leading the league basically in turnover margin. It's a big part of the game. That's something they do exceptionally well on both sides of the ball [with] strip sacks being the main part of it. You're right, they're No. 1 in the league at that, so we have emphasized that, we have built our protections accordingly, and we have to be very conscious of that." 


On how he is feeling right now: "I'm feeling full, full from [Thanksgiving] yesterday. I spent some time with my family. [I'm] grateful for a lot of things, but I'm just trying to get ready for Sunday."

On if he believes he will play on Sunday night: "[I'm] just trying to keep approaching the game and getting as much recovery [and] treatment – everything that I can. We all get banged up. [I'm] just trying to make it."

On if it is tough having bye weeks this late into the season:"No. I think it's great. To me, you look at the schedule and the way that the season went. To find a way to win this weekend and do the things we've been doing and to go in the bye week with that record and have a nice backstretch of the season with five games left, I think it couldn't have come at a better time. Some teams get [the bye on] Week 4, and then you know you have a long season. To me personally, I think it'll work out well for all of us. Everybody [will] stay healthy and find a way to win, and it came at a good time."

On if he is looking forward to going back to Los Angeles to play on Sunday in a primetime game:"There's just certain places that have a home feeling for you, like when I landed in Arizona – it's a place that I live at. 'L.A.' [Los Angeles] is a place that I live at – it feels good to be back. You land [and get] off the plane, and it won't necessarily be 72 [degrees] and sunny when we get there at night, but it's a beautiful place [with] a lot of great memories that I've had there. So, I'm just looking forward to it."

On if he has a strong feeling that he will be able to play or not on Sunday: "It's a game time decision. I'm trying my best each and every way. I won't say that it'll be pain free, but I'm definitely going to find a way to do what I can for the people in this locker room [and] this team and find another way to help us get another win."

On his assessment of how the season has gone for him:"To be honest, I feel like a part of me gave up on the idea of whether to feel a way about expectations or where it's at. People always talk about, 'Be where your feet are at,' and what I have, what we have in front of us is so much bigger than anything else for me. What I expected as I signed, I told people … I was like, 'This is why I came here.' I feel like that personal part of wanting 1,500 yards and all the things that I once used to look at, alongside of winning, to me are just second to what the goal that we all have in mind. There's no better feeling than the confetti falling, and I think that's something that we're all working towards. It starts with just the same thing we've been talking about each and every week – one game at a time, finding a way to win [and] putting one foot in front of the other."

On if he can shoulder more of a load with catches in the red zone and on third down since TE Mark Andrews is out:"Yes. Whatever role, in any capacity, I feel like I'm ready to play it. I feel like my entire career … Of course, early on, I might've been great for fantasy football, but still, when I go watch the highlights, it's third downs, it's big plays, it's plays that are effective like an effective football player. That's what I want to continue to be here – make big plays that keep the offense on the field [and] keep drives alive. [I] definitely don't mind taking a touchdown every now and then. Truly, we have a real goal here and a big opportunity in front of us. It just starts with the day-to-day things that we have to take care of."

On how often he brings up feeling the confetti falling after a Super Bowl victory with assistant wide receivers coach Keith Williams:"Every now and then, I might give him [assistant wide receivers coach Keith Williams] a shoulder nudge. I'll remind him that I did just because it's the ultimate goal. It's what you work for. When I was a younger kid, and I was watching Tom Brady [and Adam] Vinatieri put one through the uprights ... You watch the Super Bowl every year, and I feel like every kid is like, 'I want to be in a Super Bowl. I want to score a touchdown,' or, 'I want to do those things you want to win.' What else do you do this for but to win? Knowing that's the ultimate goal, it comes at an ultimate sacrifice. I'm just trying to find a way to make that sacrifice each and every day."


On how he's feeling right now after concern yesterday with his hip:"I feel good. I'm ready to go. I feel great."

On if he feels like he's going to play on Sunday: "That wasn't even a question. I had to take a little break really quick. Now, I'm back."

On how he's feeling overall leading up to this week, not having a bye week yet and if he's heard of the rookie wall:"That didn't get me yet. The rookie wall didn't get me yet, but I'm feeling good. I'm ready to go, get this win, get a bye week, go home and see my family. So, I'm feeling good going into this game." 

On what he sees from the Chargers defense and their pass game when watching them on film: "They have a good team. They have a good defense; it's just I don't know what's going on over there. We're just going to take advantage of everything we can and try to be explosive, make plays and score touchdowns."


On if he was worried that his injury from a couple weeks ago was more serious when he first went down: "Yes, I was. I'm fortunate and blessed enough to have nothing serious come out of that."

On if he's encouraged by how quickly he's been able to bounce back from his injuries this season: "Yes, I look at it as a blessing – to have things like that happen to me and then look at it, and nothing major has come out of it. That's a blessing for me. I've been down the other road before, so I'm definitely looking on the positive side."

On if he expects to play Sunday: "Yes, I'm expecting to play."

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