3. The narratives are all lined up for the LA Chargers and Justin Herbert
Of course, the LA Chargers still have to go out and win games and Justin Herbert has to go out and play like he has been playing. But as long as they do that, the other half of the MVP criteria is already settled. The Bolts have multiple narratives lined up that will lead to NFL voters flocking towards Justin Herbert.
Half of the MVP award (in every sport) in narrative-driven. Voters latch onto the story as much as they do the production and the guy with the best numbers doesn't always win the award. Tom Brady probably should have been MVP last season, but voters latched onto it being Aaron Rodgers late in the season.
Some narratives that help Justin Herbert in 2022:
1. The fact that he and the LA Chargers are the new kids on the block.
New stadium, fans coming out in droves, exciting brand of football, superstar after superstar and not a lot of team success in the past. The Chargers are the new, exciting team that NFL fans and pundits are not sick of yet. They're not controversial and they are not fun to hate like the other big-market teams. Just like Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs in Mahomes' MVP season.
As far as Herbert, he has arrived on the scene already but the media has not swooned over him as it did for Joe Burrow. Heck, half of the NFL media was trying to downplay his rookie season this time last year.
2. The AFC West is extremely tough
Being able to hold a great record and potentially win the AFC West is only going to help Justin Herbert. All of the talk this offseason is about how stacked the AFC West is and a 12-5 record that wins the West is going to look way more impressive than a 13-4 record that wins the NFC South.
With these two things in mind, if Justin Herbert and the Chargers do what every Charger fan knows they are capable of then Herbert will win the MVP award in 2022. Hopefully, the Super Bowl MVP will follow.