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    Chargers’ Kellen Moore downplays idea of revenge game vs. Cowboys
    • October 14, 2023

    COSTA MESA — If there was a strong connection, it’s been severed. If there was a special relationship, it’s been terminated. If there was a reason to believe Chargers offensive coordinator Kellen Moore would have some great insight into his former team, the Dallas Cowboys, it’s been “overrated.”

    “Football is football, at the end of the day,” Moore said Friday, with the Chargers in the midst of their preparations to face the Cowboys on Monday Night Football, his first game against the franchise for which he played and coached for eight years before departing Dallas earlier this year.

    Moore laughed when it was mentioned that Dallas owner Jerry Jones said he was dreading Monday’s reunion with Moore. It will not be a revenge game for Moore. It will be a game the Chargers need to win, to extend their winning streak to three games in a row, to move them above .500.

    If there’s any extra motivation to defeat the Cowboys, it’s to deliver another comprehensive offensive performance. After all, the Chargers are 2-2 coming out of their bye week, having won their past two games after losing their first two and inviting questions about their status as an elite team.

    “I think it’s easy for everyone to overthink it,” he said of facing his former team.

    That was his story, anyway, and he was sticking to it.

    “Jerry plays the game, too, guys,” Moore said, laughing along with reporters before adopting a more serious tone a moment later. “Jerry is awesome. Obviously, I’m thankful. I spent eight years there. The Jones family and all those people (associated with the Cowboys) were awesome to me.”


    Instead of preparing quarterback Dak Prescott for Monday’s game, Moore prepared Justin Herbert. Instead of passing along all he once knew about the Cowboys’ offense to Chargers coach Brandon Staley and defensive coordinator Derrick Ansley, Moore prepared as he would for any other opponent.

    The Chargers are a different team with Moore as offensive coordinator just as the Cowboys are a different team without him.

    In fact, Dallas doesn’t have the same productive offense so far this season as it did in the past few years. The Cowboys are eighth in the 32-team NFL in points and 16th in yardage. Last season, they were fourth in points and 11th in yardage after leading the league in points and yardage in 2021.

    The Chargers are seventh in points and fifth in yardage so far this season.

    “I think that every year is very different,” Moore said. “People are continuing to evolve, schemes evolve, schemes change. There are a lot of trends in this league. We get to over-analyze stuff a little bit during the week, and then we get to football as we get closer to Monday. I think a lot of that stuff is pretty overrated. At the end of the day, it’s getting on the field and playing 11-on-11.”

    OK, fair enough, but surely there’s some intel he could pass along.

    “There are a few concepts, probably, that we run that they run, that our DBs will have familiarity with,” he said of the Chargers’ defensive backs. “There will be some other stuff, obviously, that is different than what we do. If they have a question, you’re available, but we’ve all been a part of plenty of games where coaches and players have commonalities and, usually, that stuff is kind of blown out of proportion.”


    Edge rusher Joey Bosa didn’t practice for the second consecutive day because of a toe injury. Safety Alohi Gilman (heel), defensive back Deane Leonard (hamstring) and defensive lineman Nick Williams (back) also did not practice. Bosa, Gilman and Leonard worked out on the sidelines, however.

    The Chargers expect Herbert (fractured left middle finger) and running back Austin Ekeler (sprained ankle) to play Monday without significant restrictions. Herbert was injured in the Chargers’ victory over the Las Vegas Raiders. Ekeler has been sidelined for the past three games.

    ​ Orange County Register