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Chargers Training Camp: Brandon Staley talks Derwin James, Kenneth Murray, competition at defensive line

The Bolts’ head coach had plenty to say following the first day of camp.

Los Angeles Chargers Training Camp Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images

At the Chargers’ first practice of training camp, the music blaring from the speakers was turned up high and the energy from the players was even higher. It was a picturesque day to begin camp with the fan base out in droves to see their team take the practice field.

Head coach Brandon Staley took to the podium following the first practice of training camp and I wrote up a recap of the highlights.

On Derwin James and his looming contract extension:

“We’re working through his contract situation. Just making sure that gets situated here. He’s out here doing all the walkthroughs. He’s going to be working out, but he won’t be going full speed until that gets situated.”

“We’ve got full respect for Derwin, his agent David Mulgeleta, who is one of the best int he business, and I think there’s full respect on both sides. They know how much we love Derwin. Derwin knows how much we love him. We’re just working through that process right now. We’re going to let it take shape and when it does, he’ll be out there playing.”

On the health of James’ shoulder:

“Oh yeah. 100 percent clear. Derwin’s ready to go.”

On the expectations for fourth-round rookie running back Isaiah Spiller:

“He’s going to be in a full competition at running back. It’s not just going to be him as a running back. It’s going to be him on special teams and it’s going to be who can be the most complete back for our football team. I’m excited to see that competition take shape.”

On when Kenneth Murray could return from the PUP list:

“There’s not a timeline. I know he’s made a lot of progress over the summer. Not enough to start camp but I think you’ll see him at some point during training camp. He’s working hard and he’s feeling much closer but I’m not going to put a timeline on it. I just think he’ll be practicing at some point in the next four to six weeks.”

On what will ultimately decide who wins the starting right tackle job:

“I think consistency and performance. Being a complete tackle. Run game. Pass game. We’re going to get a very accurate evaluation from them with who they have to block every single day. Obviously throughout the preseason and games, we’re going to have a lot of opportunities evaluate these guys and I know that we have confidence in both of them. It’s going to be fun to see these two compete and, I think, it’s not just about them, it’s how they play with the other four guys who are on the offensive line and the other players around them, too. They’ve worked really hard. I think you can see big changes in both of them. They’re both confident football players and that’s going to bring out the best in both of them.”

On if we’ll see the same “Fourth & Staley” play-calling this season:

“I think every year is a new season. I think that we have full confidence in our team and how we do things. I think each of those things have a life of its’ own. That’s what I said that from the beginning. I know that kind’ve exploded last year and I do think that’s a positive thing because we want to be aggressive and we want to have a team that’s fearless, that’s not scared to meet a moment. But every decision has a life of its’ own and you’re going to take it case by case. We have a brand new team so to say we’re going to do it exactly like we last year...that’s not going to be the case.”

On the competition within the defensive line group:

“A lot of competition and guys competing for different roles. We normally have five active on game day. Five or six and those spots are going to be important. Competing for roles and what that exactly looks like, we’ve got four to six weeks to figure it out. I think we do have some good pieces that can play some unique roles for us but that’s going to take shape as we go and we’re going to know all we need to know about these guys when we put pads on. Who can stay in that consistency and performance. Who can produce and make plays. Fortunately we’re going to have a great evaluation because our offensive line is one of the top lines in football.”