Justin Herbert

LA Chargers: 3 things we’ve learned about Justin Herbert in 3 starts

Oct 4, 2020; Tampa, Florida, USA; Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert (10) throws a pass against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the second quarter of a NFL game at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 4, 2020; Tampa, Florida, USA; Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert (10) throws a pass against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the second quarter of a NFL game at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /
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(Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports) – LA Chargers

2. Justin Herbert can handle the pressure

This is not saying that Justin Herbert can handle the pressure of being a franchise quarterback (which also seems to be true). This is pressure in the literal sense — Justin Herbert can sit in the pocket and make some really good throws despite getting pressured more than he probably ever was at Oregon.

We knew that he could extend plays with his legs but would he be trigger happy and simply take off out of the pocket at the sign of any pressure, similar to Taylor in Week 1? The answer to that question was no. Herbert stayed in the pocket and made some really tough throws as the offensive line collapsed around him.

The offensive line was awful in this game. The Panthers pressured Herbert 25 times, hitting him six times and hurrying him 17 times. And in the face of all that pressure, Herbert was really good.

It was not perfect. Herbert had the strip-sack fumble early in the game that was supposed to be on a three-step drop pass and also threw an interception in the first half that essentially served as a six-point swing.

However, while he does deserve some blame, Bryan Bulaga still could have blocked much better than he did and Herbert should not have even been in that situation to throw the pick if it was not for a terrible offensive pass interference call.

Regardless, he did make some mistakes. However, that is expected out of a rookie and it is more important that we saw that he can sit in the pocket and deliver in the face of pressure.

Heck, he almost led an improbable game-winning drive that would have produced his first win of the season if Austin Ekeler would have been able to hold onto the lateral from Keenan Allen.

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