BoltHype Chats With Coach Ron Rivera

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The San Diego Chargers defense has been a hot topic as of late, but fans saw warning signs from the start of the preseason. After a poor showing through the first half of the season, the Chargers decided to go in another direction and fired Defensive Coordinator Ted Cottrell, replacing him with Ron Rivera. A popular move among fans, there is a renewed excitement and hope that Rivera can help turn the season around.

Coach Rivera has been at the helm for a few weeks now as the team's Defensive Coordinator. His first outing was a successful one, in spite of a few shaky (but forgivable) moments. Rivera showed an ability to make adjustments at half time and his team held the Kansas City Chiefs to only 6 points in the second half.

I had the chance to take a bit of Coach Rivera's time and tried to uncover what his philosophy will be as he runs the defense for the rest of the season (and beyond?)

There were some different personnel packages at times against Kansas City. In particular I noticed Paul Oliver was in on a couple of running downs. Are we going to see more of this, in terms of using certain guys in certain situations?

“Absolutely. We’re going to put players in positions to make plays.”

The Chargers don't often start rookie defenders, opting instead to bring them on slowly. What's keeping highly touted guys like Siler and Waters and Oliver from seeing more of the field? Is it a mental thing? Or are the guys in front of them simply better at this point?

“I think we’ve got some very solid veteran football players and it’s hard to displace them right now, especially in guys like Coop and Timmy Dobbins.”

Nine games into the season, teams have been writing a book on how to attack the Chargers defense. Is your philisophy to stay the course and improve execution, or do the Chargers need to present more looks?

“I think a combination of both. We need to continue to work on what we do best and at the same time present more challenges by adding some more to what we do.”

In terms of improving the pass rush, how does that happen without adding players to the roster? Do you have everything you need right now to generate those negative plays? What about blitzing defensive backs?

“Absolutely, and we did.”

Will Ron Rivera be in San Diego next season?

“Absolutely and I’m looking forward to it. I like my situation with the current circumstances. The question is, hopefully the club will have me.”

Special thanks go out to Bill and his awesome PR staff for working with me, Coach Rivera for taking the time, and the San Diego Chargers for running a first-class organization!

November 13, 2008

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Anonymous said... Nov 13, 2008, 2:27:00 PM

I hope Rivera keeps Wilhelm on the bench where he belongs!

DaMonster said... Nov 13, 2008, 2:39:00 PM

So if we miss the playoffs this year does that mean we will be looking for a new offensive coordinator, a new defensive coordinator, AND a new head coach?

there goes our chances for a Superbowl...

Anonymous said... Nov 13, 2008, 5:43:00 PM

I'm glad that Timmy Dobbins is getting playing time. He's the one guy on the defense that will actually HIT someone

Closet Geek said... Nov 13, 2008, 8:25:00 PM

Looks like Ron is a man of few words. Good. Now get back to work preparing for S*itsburgh.

DB's blitzed? Really? Wonder why I didnt notice? Oh, that's right, because it didn't do jack squat. OH! I know, lets send Weddle...Oh, wait, that wont work either as he'd probably get trucked by the QB. Hell, just blitz TIMMAY! and Coop on every down. we can't cover worth S*it over the middle anyway. TE's love our D!!!

"We need to continue to work on what we do best"

No, you need to work on a pass rush. PERIOD. Everything else will fall in place if we could put some damn pressure on a QB. There is no reason a guy named Thigpen should put up 266 yards and 3 TD's. Put some pressure on that guy and those TD's might have turned into INT's, something we're sorely lacking this year. And why is that? Cause Pigpen had enough time in the pocket to cook himself some eggs, drink some coffee and read the paper while Phillips and Tucker play pretend pass rushers.


PS - Damn you Merriman for not getting your knee taken care of at the end of last season. Hope you're enjoying the disaster unfold as much as I am.

Anonymous said... Dec 7, 2008, 8:43:00 AM

Ok, Ron Rivera needs to show this video the team to get them fired up, 2 great Charger Theme songs, if they can just get past the coach flashbacks or edit them, this would be great locker room material

Great defensive and offensive motivator:

Cool Theme Song:

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