Herbert airing it out for Chargers


The legend of Justin Herbert grows


Justin Herbert

Justin Herbert’s elite arm strength was already well-known around the NFL. But a recent play involving the Los Angeles Chargers’ second-year quarterback served only to burnish what is becoming a legendary reputation.

It was third and 11 with time running down in the second quarter of the Bolts’ Week 14 game against the New York Giants when Herbert dropped back, rolled right and launched a bullet 65 yards on a fly that wide receiver Jalen Guyton caught in stride in for what would be a 59-yard touchdown pass and a 24-7 lead. Fans and announcers at SoFi Stadium went berserk and the video of the play soon went viral.

As much MVP talk swirls around Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers and Kyler Murray, it might be wise not to sleep on Herbert. As of mid-December, the 2020 Offensive Rookie of the Year was fourth in the league in passing yards with 3,822 (behind Brady, Derek Carr and Matthew Stafford) and third in passing touchdowns with 30 (behind Brady and Stafford).

Furthermore, after two losing seasons the Chargers have a legitimate shot at the postseason and the stellar play of their 23-year-old signal caller is a big reason why. If he and the Bolts can stay hot and reach the playoffs, Herbert and his cannon right arm may wind up with another addition to his trophy case.

Herbert and the Chargers can be seen in action Sunday, Jan. 9, when they drop in on the Las Vegas Raiders in the regular season finale airing as a regional game on CBS.

Player Profile

Full name: Justin Patrick Herbert

Birth date: March 10, 1998

Birthplace: Eugene, Ore.

Height/weight: 6 foot 6 inches/240 pounds

Teams: Los Angeles Chargers (2020-present)

Position: Quarterback

No.: 10

College: Oregon

Draft: Selected in the first round (sixth overall) by the Chargers in 2020

Honors and achievements: NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year (2020); PFWA All-Rookie Team (2020); Senior Bowl MVP (2020); Rose Bowl Offensive MVP (2020)

Did you know?: Holds rookie records for passing touchdowns (31), total touchdowns (36), completions (396) and 300-yard games (8)

George Dickie

George Dickie has been a features writer for Gracenote/Tribune Media Services since 1989, when “Hee-Haw” was still on the air and George “Goober” Lindsay was his first interview. His early interviews ranged from Jim Henson and Dick Van Dyke to Phil Collins and the Dixie Chicks.

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