COSTA MESA, Calif. (AP) — Los Angeles Chargers defensive end Joey Bosa set an NFL record with 19 sacks in his first 20 career games.

He recorded at least 10 1/2 sacks in each of his first two seasons, but Bosa and the Chargers insist the best is yet to come.

"I think there's so much I have to work on that I have an idea in my head of what I want things to look like and how I want to be as a player, and I'm not anywhere near those things, but I know I'm making the right steps in that direction," Bosa said Sunday.

Cornerback Casey Hayward has never been shy in sharing his belief that Bosa could become the best defender in football. It was only reinforced last season as Bosa's pass rush skills helped contribute to Hayward intercepting four passes.

"Made my life a lot easier," Hayward said. "A couple of my picks last year came off Joey hitting the guy, wobbly ball, I take all of them."

Entering his third season, the next step in Bosa's development could come from a better understanding of coordinator Gus Bradley's 4-3 defense. The Chargers were productive in 2017 while transitioning to Bradley's system, finishing third in points per game allowed, tied for fifth in sacks, and sixth in takeaways. Those rankings could improve as the coaches, players and front office are more comfortable with what will allow the defense to succeed in this iteration.

The Chargers added depth in the draft, with Bosa praising defensive lineman Justin Jones and linebacker Uchenna Nwosu for their ability to get to the quarterback. The progression of second-year defensive end Isaac Rochell could result in Bosa staying fresh by allowing Bradley to rotate more. The 280-pound Bosa could play inside if Rochell is capable of creating pressure off the edge consistently, allowing Bradley to use his most disruptive players together in obvious passing situations.

Bosa, who had 12 1/2 sacks last season as the bookend to Melvin Ingram, could cause more havoc if opponents cannot focus all their attention on stopping the two standout defensive ends.

"Joey can improve," coach Anthony Lynn said. "I don't think he has reached his peak yet at all, and the better we get on that defensive line and create more one-on-one matchups, that's going to help his success as well."

But Bosa will never put a target on his individual production going into his season after recognizing that chasing personal goals often comes at the expense of both the individual and the team.

"If you want to get 15 sacks and you're out there doing your own things to get sacks, more than likely you're going to hurt the team and not get a sack rather than you just doing your job and you falling into one," Bosa said. "I've come to realize when I'm really out there trying to make a play like that, I do something wrong and they'll break a run or whatever. But if I I stay within myself and the defense, it usually works out pretty well."

Bosa's zen mentality carries over to his offseason workouts. He stresses developing his overall athleticism rather than addressing any particular football technique. That regiment makes the first week of training camp something of a transition period, with Bosa joking he is focused on "lining up right."

Still, Hayward sees how Bosa approaches the game spilling over to the rest of the team. If Bosa can improve on his momentous initial returns, that bodes well for the Chargers as a whole.

"That's definitely contagious. You see that, you want to work just as hard as he does," Hayward said.

NOTES: Rookie tight end Austin Roberts tore his ACL on Saturday, Lynn said. . The Chargers will practice in full pads for the first time Monday.

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