Overreaction #4: Justin Herbert is the new franchise quarterback.
Didn’t think I would just let the hype on Justin Herbert carry away unchecked, did you?
If we are being realistic, no one game performance should ever convince anyone that a quarterback is a franchise quarterback. There are way too many examples of players having one or even several good starts before going downhill. One example we saw of that last year was Kyle Allen, who had a fantastic start before defenses figured him out and put him back on the bench in 2020.
Beyond this simple fact, there are more reasons to slow the Herbert hype train a bit. To start, there were several clear “rookie” mistakes that he made, the majority of which are fixable.
One major rookie hiccup we saw was a simple check downplay where indecision resulted in a 14-yard loss. There was also the interception on a throw where a simple run would have resulted in a 10-yard gain and first down.
Another thing of concern was Herbert’s accuracy. While Herbert had some fantastic throws, including one to Keenan Allen in triple coverage, he showed some accuracy issues on easy throws.
Early in the game, Herbert had some massive overthrows and some plain misses on simple throws. It is quite possible that these bad throws were due to jitters or overthinking simple completions, but it is worth tracking in the future if these plays continue.
Missing simple throws is a massive red flag, but it is excusable in a quarterback’s first NFL game.
In no way am I indicating that Herbert is not the quarterback of the future. In this game, Herbert showed his elite physical traits, demonstrating why he was selected so early in this draft. It also seems that he may be ready earlier than most predicted.
However, we simply have not seen enough to declare that Justin Herbert is the quarterback of the future at this point.
Verdict 4: Overreaction