Justin Herbert has already made his mark on the LA Chargers’ all-time ranks.
As a lifetime Charger fan I love Philip Rivers and he will forever be one of my favorite players of all-time but Herbert is already doing things in year one that Rivers could never do — and Rivers is a Hall of Famer.
And that is without a preseason and without any time to transition into the starting job. Herbert was thrown into the fire. He extinguished it and started to light the league on fire himself.
No quarterback in the history of the NFL had as many passing yards through seven career games than Justin Herbert’s 2,146. If he keeps at his current pace, he would become the first rookie quarterback in NFL history to average 300 passing yards per game.
Andrew Luck holds the record (among quarterbacks to start at least 14 games) with 273.4 yards per game. He also currently has the second-highest completion percentage for a rookie in NFL history, only behind Dak Prescott‘s 67.76% in 2016 (Herbert is at 67.29%).
Herbert is also on pace to throw 36 passing touchdowns, assuming he plays every remaining game and tallies 15 on the season. The most all-time for a rookie is 27. That is an easy benchmark for Herbert to surpass.
The kid is good. Historically good.
In fact, Justin Herbert is so good that at the end of the season we can definitively say that he is already a bonafide top-10 quarterback in franchise history. He could retire after his rookie season, go pursue a career in biology (what he majored in) and he would still make the top-10 all-time quarterbacks list.
If he continues his current pace then he will finish with 4,599 passing yards (let’s just round up to 4,600). That would put him eighth in franchise history already, right behind Doug Flutie. His 36 touchdowns would put him seventh, right behind Jack Kemp.
One season. Already in the top seven/eight in franchise history. It’ll take another two seasons to pass Drew Brees, another three seasons to pass Stan Humphries. By year four, Herbert will already be on the Mount Rushmore of Charger quarterbacks.
Even crazier then that is understanding just how good this season is for Justin Herbert. The LA Chargers have a really good trio of historical quarterbacks. Philip Rivers is a future Hall of Famer, Dan Fouts already is a Hall of Famer and John Hadl is one of the best quarterbacks in AFL history.
Yet if Herbert continues at his current pace he will shatter anything those three ever did. His current yardage pace would give him the seventh-most in a single season in franchise history in just 15 games. If he played 16 games at this pace he would finish with 4,905 yards, 103 more than the most in a single season by Fouts in 1981.
His 36 touchdowns would be the most in a single season in franchise history, again, in only 15 games. At his current pace, we can expect him to finish with at least 4,500 passing yards and 35 touchdowns and (if things hold) a 67% completion percentage.
Not only has that never been done in franchise history, but it has only been done 13 times in league history. Tom Brady, Drew Brees, Peyton Manning, Daunte Culpepper (weird), Andrew Luck, Aaron Rodgers, Matt Ryan and Kurt Warner have done it. All but Culpepper are/will be Hall of Famers.
Only Aaron Rodgers did it in 15 games.
Justin Herbert is already a top-10 quarterback in LA Chargers’ history before even playing eight games. I am confident in saying that.