The Chargers made the long trip to D.C. for a Week One game that started at 10:00 a.m. Pacific time. They pulled off the victory and moved to 1-0 on the season. After the game, receiver Keenan Allen gushed about the coach who got them there.
“True leader,” Allen told me by phone regarding Brandon Staley. “Real player’s coach. He comes to work every day shows up with incredible energy. Gives us a game plan and we go for it. He’s one of the best I’ve been around.”
I later asked Allen, who has started his ninth NFL season, how this version of the Chargers differs from others.
“Differently coached I would say,” Allen said. “I think we were a little bit better schemed, no disrespect to the last coaches we’ve had. A little bit better schemed. A little bit better prepared.”
It helps to have a great young quarterback in Justin Herbert. One coach observed last night via text that Herbert is the best of all young quarterbacks in the NFL. I asked Allen when he knew that Herbert was the real deal.
“Shit, the first drive he had [against] Kansas City last year,” Allen said.
The win sets the stage for a Week Two visit from the Cowboys, and a chance for the Chargers to continue to put folks on notice that they could rival the Chiefs for the title of best team in the AFC West. The Chargers also could push the Rams for the title of best team in L.A.