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Chargers focused on preparation

Discussion in 'American Football' started by Johnny Lightning, Oct 24, 2007.

  1. Johnny Lightning

    Johnny Lightning Go Bolts

    Feb 7, 2006
    Wednesday, Oct 24, 2007
    By Casey Pearce, Chargers.com

    The Chargers boarded an airplane Tuesday night for what the team referred to as a business trip.

    “We’ve got a job to do,” fullback Lorenzo Neal said. “We have to worry about the Texans. This is a big game for us. No one is going to feel sorry for us once we hit the field. We have to be ready to play.”

    The Chargers arrived in Arizona just before 8 p.m. Tuesday. Head Coach Norv Turner has done his best to keep the team’s schedule as close to normal as possible. Per their regular routine, the team will begin meetings Wednesday morning. The difference is they’ll be conducting them in a Phoenix hotel rather than their practice facility.

    “We’re dealing with a few inconveniences, but when you look at all the people in San Diego who are out of their homes right now, it’s nothing,” safety Clinton Hart said. “We’re all professionals. We’ve got a lot of veterans on this team. We’ll handle it all.”

    Shortly after lunch Wednesday, the Chargers will load buses and head to the Arizona Cardinals’ practice facility in Tempe for their regular practice. Considering all that has gone on in San Diego over the last few days, the Bolts’ ability to block out distractions becomes even more important this week.

    “We have to focus in and we have to do a great job in the next three days,” Turner said. “The whole key for us is the week of preparation. If we prepare properly then all the other things are irrelevant.”

    The Chargers were off during the day Tuesday before reporting to Chargers Park in the early evening to head to the airport. As of Tuesday evening, no one affiliated with the organization had for certain lost their homes and all of their families were secure. That made turning to football a little easier.

    “All our families are safe. That's what's most important,” quarterback Philip Rivers said. “Obviously we feel for the people that were more directly affected. There is going to be a game this week. We've got to put all the focus there. From what I gather, we've all been able to do that.”
    From a football standpoint, the stakes are high for the Chargers this weekend. They’re 3-3 and riding a two-game win streak. A win would allow them to tie the idle Kansas City Chiefs for first place in the AFC West.

    “It’s a big game for us, one that we really need to win,” offensive tackle Marcus McNeill said. “I know Houston isn’t feeling great after the way they lost a tough one last week. They’re going to come ready to play and we have to be ready.”

    From a physical standpoint, the Chargers should be ready to hit the field Wednesday. Thanks to a long bye weekend, the team hasn’t practiced since last Thursday. They will have had five days away from football when they begin preparations for the Texans.

    As of Tuesday evening, the Chargers had no new information on the location of Sunday’s game. Qualcomm Stadium is currently housing several thousand evacuees. San Diego State postponed its game scheduled for Saturday evening. The Chargers issued a statement Tuesday night saying that the team is in communication with Mayor Jerry Sanders as well as police and firefighters to determine the best way to deal with the issue.

    “Protecting the public safety is the Mayor’s top goal, and the Chargers will continue to cooperate with the Mayor to achieve this goal,” the statement read.

    As far as players and coaches are concerned, they must simply be prepared regardless of venue.

    “From the standpoint of our organization and our players, we’d love to play it here in front of our fans and provide a positive influence in this situation,” Turner said. “If that doesn’t happen, we still have to be ready. We’re just focused on preparing for the game right now.”

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