Still looking for first win

In his third diary entry, Drayton Florence reflects on the emotions of being in the NFL -- and starting his career with two losses.

Updated: September 18, 2003, 10:21 AM ET
By Drayton Florence | Special to ESPN.com

Editor's note: Defensive back Drayton Florence, taken in the second round of this year's NFL draft by the San Diego Chargers, will chronicle his rookie experiences in a weekly diary for ESPN.com.

Drayton Florence
Florence
Right now I am a gamut of emotions. On one hand, I am excited that I am a player in the National Football League. But I also am disappointed that I am a player on a team that has lost its first two games.

Nobody on this team likes losing. We had a great training camp, were ready to play in both of our games and didn't get the job done. No excuses and no finger pointing. We win as a team and lose as a team.

Right now we're all frustrated. Some people have said our defense is too young and inexperienced and it will take us a year to come together. I don't buy any of those excuses. We're all good enough and we need to play better. Immediately. Speaking for myself, I need to play better and I'll do whatever it takes to be part of a winning team. For me the losses really tempered the joy of playing in my first regular season NFL games. I haven't played great and haven't played horrible. I've learned a lot in the first two games. It would've been great to learn and win both of the games, but we didn't. All I know is that we have to continue to work hard to get better.

We won't dwell on the losses. Are we upset and accountable that we've lost two games? The answer, of course, is yes. We've got too many leaders on this team not to rebound from the losses. We realize that we have enough talent to win our division and all we have to do is execute.

I feel upset that we let our fans down in our home opener. They came out, made a bunch of noise and for some reason we got off to a slow start. I hope the fans know we understand they're frustrations. While we're just as frustrated, we're not panicking.

We have too many playmakers on offense -- LaDainian Tomlinson, Drew Brees and David Boston -- and veterans on defense -- Marcellus Wiley, Donnie Edwards, Raylee Johnson and Kwamie Lassiter -- not to rebound. Our focus now is to win our next game against Baltimore.

We know they're going to come in here brimming with confidence after their win against Cleveland and Jamal Lewis' record-setting performance. As a defense, we have to take it upon ourselves to rise to the occasion and stop him.

As far as my life away from football, I really enjoy San Diego. It's a great city, but I really haven't seen too much of it because every minute I'm working on becoming a better player. Whether it is thinking while I am driving about something one of my coaches told me in practice or when I am at home and I am replaying in my mind something that happened in practice, I'm always trying to become a better football player.

We can talk about winning all we want, but on Sundays we have to go out and perform. The veterans have told me how rocking Qualcomm Stadium gets when we win. Hopefully, this Sunday afternoon is filled with smoke from our cannon signifying that we've scored a lot of points and our defense gives our fans a reason to scream until they all have laryngitis.

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