NFL

Chargers coach Staley never concerned about job status amid Payton talk

By Sports Desk January 18, 2023

Los Angeles Chargers coach Brandon Staley was never concerned about losing his job even after his team's historic collapse in a playoff loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars on Saturday.

Asked during Wednesday's season-ending news conference if he ever felt his job was in danger, Staley responded bluntly: "No."

While the Chargers are keeping Staley on the job, they did fire offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi and quarterbacks coach/passing game coordinator Shane Day on Tuesday.

"I have a lot of confidence in how we do things here and what we've been able to accomplish and that's the truth," Staley said.

"Everybody that's been around me on a day-to-day basis knows that. I am aware of the speculation … but I was not worried about that because I know what goes on here on a day-to-day basis. I know what we have in our locker room. I know what's out on that field and I'm excited to keep going."

Staley guided the Chargers to a 10-7 record this season and their first playoff berth since 2018. He is 19-15 in two seasons as head coach.

Former New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton is rumoured to be ready to get back into coaching and the Chargers would've been considered a prime landing spot with quarterback Justin Herbert emerging as a top player at the position.

Payton has already met with the Denver Broncos and Houston Texans and will soon meet with the Carolina Panthers, according to reports.

Despite Staley's success, he received criticism after he decided to play starters in the regular-season finale despite having already clinched the No. 5 seed right before kick-off. Star receiver Mike Williams suffered a back injury in that game that forced him to miss the playoff loss to Jacksonville.

That decision was only made worse when the Chargers blew a 27-0 lead to the Jaguars in a 31-30 loss that kept Los Angeles without a playoff victory since 2018.

Staley was asked if Jaguars coach Doug Pederson outcoached him.

"I wouldn't say that was the case for a half," he said. "That team that we were playing showed a lot of fight, a lot of resilience. I thought it was a high-quality game against two teams that are both young and hungry. I thought it was just a high-level game all around."

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