SAN DIEGO -- The Dallas Cowboys arrive here Thursday night, and to San Diego Chargers, facing an opponent sounds better than beating up each other.
The Chargers also are eager to show off their new depth, fresh confidence and just maybe unleash a wrinkle or two.
With coach Mike McCoy, that is not likely. He will play it close to the vest, showing most cards at a later day than on a hot August night. Even so, the Chargers turn on the lights knowing with a bright outlook.
No. 1, as always, is everyone is relatively healthy in the back stretch of training camp.
Cornerback Jason Verrett still dons a red, hands-off jersey in team drills. The rookie first-down pick is moving well, but he has yet to be hit after undergoing shoulder surgery in the spring.
Otherwise, San Diego is enjoying a clean camp.
The Chargers are happy with how the offense is clicking in quarterback Philip Rivers' second year in McCoy's up-tempo attack. The addition of Donald Brown is providing a three-headed running attack, and the sight of wide receiver Malcom Floyd opposite Keenan Allen even makes Allen look better.
The defense is nearly two deep at every spot, and it was a few summers since that statement was whispered at in the Chargers' camp.
The secondary was remade. There is an overload of edge linebackers with potential to make life miserable for quarterbacks. Again, not a bad thing.
However, looking good in practice and looking good in games are different, which makes Thursday night something the players can embrace in a camp that opened July 24.
The right guard spot is worth watching, as is the spirited battle at strong safety. Mostly, though, starting Thursday night, the Chargers are eager to show what they can do, not really who will be doing it.
"The camp has gotten off to an unbelievable start," safety Eric Weddle said. "We just got to be moving forward, keep grinding and strive to be great."
This time last summer, the Chargers were just trying to be relevant after three years of missing the playoffs. No one really knew what to expect when McCoy trotted out for the preseason opener, a head coach for the first time at any level.
The 2014 team enters the preseason schedule in a different place, one the players hope to build on.
It is time to play somebody -- anybody? -- and the confident Chargers will take that.