Chargers coach Brandon Staley has mom on mind after first win – Los Angeles Times

LANDOVER, Md. — 

Before Sunday, Brandon Staley never had been a head coach, at any level.

Now, he’s 1-0 as an NFL head coach, his first victory even more meaningful because it came on the day his mother, Linda, would have turned 64.

“I miss her a lot,” Staley said after the Chargers’ 20-16 victory at Washington. “I’m proud to get this win. I love her and miss her dearly. I’m really glad that we’re leaving here on the positive side of things.”

Linda died of breast cancer in 2004. Staley is a cancer survivor.

His mother’s influence can be seen daily as he emphasizes the teaching aspect of his job. Linda was a teacher, one her son called “the best I’ve ever seen.”

“She would be happy but not satisfied because we didn’t play our best today,” Staley said. “She would expect me to get on the plane and love the guys but make sure we get going because we got to play better.”

On their travel day Saturday, the Chargers also talked as a team about the 20th anniversary of 9/11.

“It gives you the balance that you need as a competitor,” Staley said, “to know there’s something bigger than yourself out there.”

Bulaga sidelined

The Chargers lost right tackle Bryan Bulaga for the second half because of a lower-back injury. He was replaced by Storm Norton. Last season, Bulaga had lower-back problems that limited him to 38% of the team’s offensive snaps.

Soon after entering the game, Norton was beaten by Montez Sweat. The defensive end got to Justin Herbert, causing him to fumble through the end zone for a touchback.

Etc.

Defensive tackle Justin Jones missed the second half because of cramping, Staley said. … Herbert finished 31 for 47 for 337 yards, his ninth career 300-yard game.