Safe Nasir Adderley showing rapid improvement at Chargers camp

The Chargers practice on Wednesday ended after a collision that resulted in Maurice French being called by medical personnel.

The reserve receiver was fine and left the field on his own.

It is worth noting another result of the game: Nasir Adderley had another interception.

A day after he killed pro bowler Justin Herbert, Adderley got Herbert’s understudy, Chase Daniel, near the goal line, defending the ball when he and French collided.

When Charging device drafted by Adderley in the second round in 2019, he has arrived with a reputation as a playmaker who can generate losses.

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

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

Starting his second year under head coach Brandon Staley’s system, Adderley said the experience meant he had to think less, which allowed him to play faster.

“You can look at quarterback tendencies,” he said. “You can look at where the receivers are aligned and also the distances and all that. When you don’t think about what you need to do, you can see so much more.”

Adderley’s only interception in the NFL came in New Orleans in the fifth week of 2020, when he secured the ouster of Drew Brees. He returned the ball to the yard line and the Chargers scored after three plays.

Since then, in 25 games, Adderley has failed to make a single interception. Several potential picks passed through his hands last season.

Staley spoke highly of Adderley during the offseason as the Chargers rebuilt much of their defense after an uneven performance in 2021. On Wednesday, he continued to advertise for Adderley.

“I told you guys at the end of the mini-camp that I consider him a bright spot, an outstanding player,” Staley said. “You ask for it, and I feel like he definitely deserved this mantle, and he deserved it here at camp.”

Defensive coordinator Renaldo Hill praised Adderley for his development, saying the safety played with more composure during training camp compared to his previous spell with the Chargers.

    Safety Chargers Derwin James Jr.  (3) participate in training during training.

Safety Chargers Derwin James Jr. (3) has participated in organized team activities this off-season but will not train during training camp until the contract extension is completed.

(Ashley Landis/Associated Press)

“When we got Nas we knew it had a big engine,” Hill said. “He can run and cover so much ground. But it’s a lot of young guys. It’s like that dog that walks and rides fast.

“Now he has calmed down. He understands when gas can be used and when not. There he becomes more of a quarterback. … I really like what I see. This is not a prediction. He goes to the right places at the right time.”

With Pro Bowl safety Derwin James Jr. missed the first seven training camps as negotiations over contract extension to continue, Adderley took on additional responsibilities in the minor.

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

“Without Dervin, you can feel it more, it’s the quarterback’s presence,” Staley said. “That’s what you need for safety. It can’t be a one-man show. He started well. We expect him to keep playing like that.”

Etc.

Linebacker Drew Tranquill (groin) was out of training. Tight end Tre McKitty, defenseman Mark Webb Jr., cornerback Tevon Campbell and wide receiver Jason Moore Jr. also tired. According to Staley, they each deal with “soft tissue” trauma. … The Chargers will not practice on Thursday, but will return to the field on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Their Sunday session, due to start at 5:00 pm in Costa Mesa, will be an intra-squad bout. … Veteran tight end Gerald Everett on 6-foot-8, 237-pound tight end kid Donald Parham Jr.: “He’s huge. He’s like LeBron [James] playing tight end. … Sebastian Joseph-Day’s defensive tackle had a similar reaction to Herbert’s 6-6: “I remember the first time I met him. He came up to me and introduced himself. I thought, “Damn, this guy is pretty tall. This guy could play D-end if he wanted to, if he put on a few pounds.” “