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Chargers’ Brandon Staley believes he should remain head coach after disastrous loss: ‘I believe in myself’

Brandon Staley doesn’t know whether he’ll continue to be the head coach of the Los Angeles Chargers, but he does believe that he should be. 

The Chargers looked lifeless in Thursday night’s blowout loss to the Las Vegas Raiders, a team that came off a 3-0 loss just five days earlier. 

Running back Brandon Bolden, #34 of the Las Vegas Raiders, celebrates after scoring a touchdown with teammate tight end Michael Mayer, #87 against the Los Angeles Chargers, during the second quarter at Allegiant Stadium on December 14, 2023, in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Candice Ward/Getty Images)

Trailing 42-0 by halftime and allowing more than 57 points was a historic low for the team that played without quarterback Justin Herbert, who watched from the sidelines after undergoing season-ending surgery on his hand. 

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“We just didn’t have a good game tonight,” Staley told reporters after the game. “We didn’t have it from the beginning to the end. Just one of those games where nothing went right for us. And we’ve got a good group of guys, but it was just one of those games where all three phases – the worst thing happened to us tonight.”

But it wasn’t a “normal occurrence” in the league, as some reporters pointed out. The 42-point deficit by halftime has only been seen twice before, according to The Associated Press, once in 2014 by the Green Bay Packers over the Chicago Bears and in 1983 with the Packers over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. 

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Naturally, Staley’s future with the team was the topic of conversation. When asked whether he thought he would be head coach on Friday, he responded, “I don’t know that.” 

Brandon Staley walks off the field

Head coach Brandon Staley of the Los Angeles Chargers walks off of the field after losing to the Las Vegas Raiders, 63-21, at Allegiant Stadium on December 14, 2023, in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

“Yes,” he said when pressed further about whether he thought he should be. 

“I know what I’ve done here for three years, and I know what I put into this. I know that we’re capable of going. I know the type of coach that I am, I believe in myself. But again, this isn’t about me. This is about a group that’s hurting in there. We’ve gotta get some rest, and we’ve gotta get ready for Buffalo.” 

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Staley took ownership of the Chargers’ breakdown, saying he “didn’t do anything well enough” to prepare the team for Thursday’s game. But when asked why that would mean he should remain head coach, Staley suggested: It happens. 

“Games like this happen in the NFL – to every coach that’s ever coached in this league. You can look at any great coach that’s ever coached in the league, sometimes games like this happen. And I don’t need to retrace history, but it’s part of sports. Sometimes there are games where it doesn’t go right, none of it. And you’ve gotta put it behind you, and you’ve gotta move on to the next thing.”

Brandon Staley looks on from the sideline

Head coach Brandon Staley of the Los Angeles Chargers looks on from the sideline against the Las Vegas Raiders during the fourth quarter at Allegiant Stadium on December 14, 2023, in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

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The Chargers have now lost five of their last six games and have been outscored 171-102 in those games. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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