Safety Nasir Adderley showing vast improvement in Chargers camp

The Chargers’ practice Wednesday ended after a collision that resulted in Maurice Ffrench being treated by medical staff.

The backup wide receiver was fine and left the field alone.

The other result of the game was also worth noting: Nasir Adderley had another interception.

A day after beating Pro Bowler Justin Herbert, Adderley got Herbert’s backup, Chase Daniel, near the goal line and secured the ball as he and Ffrench met.

When Adderley was drafted in the second round by the Chargers in 2019, he gained a reputation as a playmaker who could generate revenue.

Adderley had 11 interceptions and four forced fumbles over his four seasons in Delaware.

But in his first 34 NFL games — 29 of them starting — Adderley has only one interception and one forced fumble.

Adderley is entering his second year in head coach Brandon Staley’s system and said the experience gives him less thinking, which allows him to play faster.

“You can look at the quarterback’s tendencies,” he said. “You can look at where the receivers are aligned, the spacing and distances and all that. If you’re not thinking about what you need to do, you can look at a lot more.”

Adderley’s only NFL interception came in Week 5 of 2020 in New Orleans when he caught a fall from Drew Brees. He returned the ball to the one-yard line and the Chargers scored three plays later.

In 25 games since then, Adderley has failed to produce another interception. He’d let a few potential pickoffs slip through his hands last season.

Staley spoke highly of Adderley throughout the offseason as the Chargers rebuilt much of their defense after an uneven performance in 2021. He continued promoting Adderley on Wednesday.

“I told you guys at the end of minicamp that I think he’s a real bright spot, a standout,” Staley said. “You ask for it, and I feel like he definitely deserves that coat, and he deserves it here at camp.”

Defensive coordinator Renaldo Hill praised Adderley for his development and said the safety played with more composure in training camp compared to his earlier time with the Chargers.

Charger safety Derwin James Jr. (3) participates in drills during a training session.

Chargers safety Derwin James Jr. (3) participated in organized team activities this offseason but will not train during training camp pending a contract extension.

(Ashley Landis/Associated Press)

“We knew when we got Nas that it had a big engine,” Hill said. “He can run and cover so much ground. But that’s a lot of young people. It’s like that dog that gets around and just goes fast.

“Now he has a peace of his own. He understands when to step on the gas and when not. He’s becoming more of a quarterback back there. … I really like what I see. It’s not a second opinion. He goes to the right places at the right time.”

With Pro Bowl safetyman Derwin James Jr. missing the first seven training camp drills while negotiations for a contract extension continue, Adderley has taken on additional duties at the secondary school.

Even when James is on the field, Adderley often directs the back end of the defense when James is aligned closer to the line of scrimmage.

“Without Durwin being out there, you can feel that more, that quarterback presence,” Staley said. “It’s something you need for security. It can’t be a one man show. He’s off to a good start. We expect him to continue playing like this.”


Linebacker Drue Tranquill (groin) again did not practice. Tight end Tre’ McKitty, defenseman Mark Webb Jr., cornerback Tevaughn Campbell and wide receiver Jason Moore Jr. also sat out. Everyone deals with a “soft tissue injury,” Staley said. … The Chargers will not practice on Thursday before returning to the field on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Their Sunday session, scheduled to begin at 5 p.m. in Costa Mesa, will be an intrasquad scrimmage. … Veteran tight end Gerald Everett on fellow 6-foot-8, 237-pound tight end Donald Parham Jr.: “He’s huge. He’s like LeBron [James] Play tight end.” …Defensive tackle Sebastian Joseph-Day had a similar reaction to the 6-6 Herbert: “I remember when I first met him. He came up to me and introduced himself. I was like, ‘Damn, this guy’s pretty tall. This guy could play D-End if he wanted to if he put on a few pounds.’ ” Safety Nasir Adderley showing vast improvement in Chargers camp

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