justin herbert

Justin Herbert named MVP of the Senior Bowl

Justin Herbert named MVP of the Senior Bowl

After impressing all week for NFL coaches at the practices ahead of the Senior Bowl, Justin Herbert capped it off with a great showing in the game itself.

So good he was named the MVP of the event.

Herbert played only the first quarter completing 9-of-13 balls for 83 yards and a touchdown pass.

One of his incompletions wasn't even his fault.

He spoke after winning the award on what he wanted to show the NFL while in Mobile, Alabama.

I wanted to be myself. I wanted to come compete and I wanted to have fun. This is an opportunity I've said so many times that not a lot of people get to go through. I love the game of football and I love being here, it's been a blast.

The quarterback from Eugene, OR showed NFL coaches why he's such a coveted prospect ahead of the NFL Draft that will almost assuredly be selected in the first ten picks. His prototypical quarterback 6-foot-6 frame intrigues scouts, but his pinpoint accuracy and athleticism astounds them.

[RELATED: Who won the Senior Bowl? Justin Herbert]

He also used the week to quiet concerns from scouts that he's not a great leader, but they could have just done that by talking to anyone in the Oregon program, including tight end Spencer Webb.

The play from this week impressed many, including Matt Miller of Bleacher Report.

Herbert's former offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach of three seasons was not surprised to see Herbert excelling after college. 

 

Who won the Senior Bowl? Justin Herbert...

Who won the Senior Bowl? Justin Herbert...

After finishing up his senior season as Pac-12 Champion and Rose Bowl MVP, it was time for Justin Herbert to prepare for the next step.

So far, he has been passing with flying colors.

As the Oregon QB goes through the draft process, the expected first-round selection will be scrutinized from every aspect. He is, afterall, playing the most important position on the field, which also happens to be the hardest position to scout. 

At the Reese's Senior Bowl, Herbert got the draft process off to an amazing start.

All week at practice, Herbet has impressed everyone watching; including Cincinnati Bengals offensive coordinator Brian Callahan.

He’s very talented physically. He’s got prototypical size and athletic ability. He has a really, really strong arm. On top of that, he’s extremely intelligent and he’s very conscientious. He gathers information, he can process it and he can call it. He went under center for the first time, probably, in his career and he answered that bell with flying colors. Every day I continue to be impressed with the things we ask him to do and he answers really well.

The Bengals do own the first overall selection in the upcoming 2020 NFL Draft.

However, he wasn't the only one impressed by Herbert in practice. The former Oregon Duck was named the MVP of Senior Bowl practices.

But how did he play in the game? 

Quite well actually.

Herbert finished the first quarter with 83 yards on 9-of-13 passing and a touchdown.

 

It wasn't all great though. The Eugene native probably had flashbacks to his junior season with this drop. 

After his performance, anyone watching came away impressed by how Herbert looked. 

Duck alumn Geoff Schwartz has been on the Justin Herbert train for years and feels vindicated.

Next up, Justin Herbert will attend the NFL Combine that'll take place between February 23rd and March 2nd. It's unclear if he'll choose to throw or just have his measurables taken and take part in some drills. 

Justin Herbert accepts invite to the Reese's Senior Bowl

Justin Herbert accepts invite to the Reese's Senior Bowl

Justin Herbert may have finished his senior season at Oregon, but he's not done playing college football just yet.

Ahead of the 2020 NFL Draft, Herbert has accepted an invitation to participate in the Reese's Senior Bowl.

Herbert explained his decision to participate in the event to Chris Mortensen over text.

I think it's a great opportunity to go compete. I've always wanted to play in it and I'm excited about any chance I can get to go play football.

The event will take place on January 25th in Mobile, Alabama. Herbert will get to play with the best seniors in the nation for NFL coaches as the beginning of the draft process. Last year, future New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones and future Denver Broncos quarterback Drew Locke played in the game; both players ended their rookie seasons as the starters for their respective franchises.

Herbert is currently rated as Pro Football Focus's No. 14 overall player in the upcoming NFL Draft, and the third overall quarterback. Given the price premium of draft capital paid for quarterbacks, the Eugene native is expected to be taken in the top half of the first round. He finished his senior season at Oregon passing for 3,471 yards and 32 touchdowns along with just six interceptions on his way to being named Rose Bowl MVP to end his Ducks career.

In addition to Herbert, Oklahoma quarterback Jalen Hurts has also accepted his invite to the game.

Look out world! Justin Herbert has an Instagram account

Look out world! Justin Herbert has an Instagram account

Justin Herbert is one of the most successful Oregon Ducks in the history of the program. 

He's also a great man of mystery. Herbert isn't one to show a lot of emotion. He keeps to himself, he's a bookworm. He's got the temperment a lot similar to former Duck and Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota. 

The two share a lot of similarities, actually.

Start at the University of Oregon? Check.

Win a Pac-12 Championship? Check.

Win the Rose Bowl? Check.

Be a first-round prospect in the NFL Draft? Almost check.

Stay off social media? Check.....until now.

Herbert has broken rank from Mariota and finally joined social media after infamously not being on any of the big social media sites for years. 

It appears he's still figuring it out, however. His first post, this sweet picture of him and coach Mario Cristobal, lacks an Instagram caption or hashtags (what are those?!). Or, perhaps Herbert just believes a picture is worth a thousand words and can stand on its own. 

After only having the account for less than a day, the account has surpassed 3,000 followers at the time of this publishing. To get him more followers, his teammates have been advertising his arrival on their Instagram stories, such a tight ends Ryan Bay and Patrick Herbert.

It's unclear why Herbert wasn't on Instagram before, but it's safe to speculate that he plays it close to the vest and garnering a ton of attention isn't high on his priority list.

This past offseason, we sat down with Juwan Johnson and asked him what a potential Herbert Instagram would look like.

Family. Football. Fishing.

Well, now Johnson will get to see if his perception is reality. 

In addition to Hebert's teammates, Duck fans were excited about his arrival to the social media as well.

Welcome to the chaos, Justin! It's nice to have you!

Justin Herbert shares emotional moment with parents following Oregon's Rose Bowl victory

Justin Herbert shares emotional moment with parents following Oregon's Rose Bowl victory

For the hometown kid, winning the Rose Bowl as the Ducks starting quarterback was "a dream come true."

Following a 28-27 victory for the Oregon Ducks (12-2) over the Wisconsin Badgers (10-4), Justin Herbert and his teammates celebrated their accomplishment.

Amidst the chaos, the four-year starting quarterback shared a moment with his parents, who raised him in Eugene where his love for the Ducks grew.

Over his college career, Herbert saw three different head coaches, but his team's win total increased every season, eventually climaxing to a Pac-12 championship and Rose Bowl championship his senior season.

At his press conference, Herbert discussed what it meant to end his career the way he did and with his parents who have been through it all with him.

I wish it wasn't over. It's been the best four years of my life...I've been honored to be a part of this team, and to represent Eugene and the university. It's humbling and it's been such a great experience and for [my parents] to be there and supportive throughout these years, it's meant a lot to me. I'm excited for the direction of the program and I couldn't be more happy about it.

Herbert committed to the University of Oregon after they gave him his lone P5 offer during his senior season of high school. Four years later, he's won a Rose Bowl as the starting quarterback of his favorite team growing up. He is expected to declare for the 2020 NFL Draft after using up all of his college eligibility. He's a projected first-round pick. 

Justin Herbert and Brady Breeze named MVPs of the 2020 Rose Bowl

Justin Herbert and Brady Breeze named MVPs of the 2020 Rose Bowl

The Oregon Ducks (12-2) are the 2020 Rose Bowl champions after defeating the Wisconsin Badgers (10-4) 28-27. 

Although Cristobal and the Ducks have prioritized gaining elite talent from recruiting hotbeds such as California and Florida, it was two hometown kids that made the difference in Pasadena. 

Former Sheldon quarterback Justin Herbert and former Central Catholic safety Brady Breeze were named Offensive MVP and Defensive MVP of the 2020 Rose Bowl, respectively. 

Herbert finished the game with 138 yards passing but he took over the game with his legs rushing for three touchdowns on nine carries for 29 yards. He became the first quarterback to rush for three touchdowns in a Rose Bowl since Vince Young in 2006. 

Some of the national media even took notice of his play.

On the other side of the football, Breeze was the easy choice for the Defensive MVP award. He finished the game with nine tackles, a pass breakup, a forced fumble, and a fumble recovery for a touchdown. 

Ducks or Badgers? Rose Bowl will be decided up front and the winner is...

Ducks or Badgers? Rose Bowl will be decided up front and the winner is...

PASADENA – Trying to figure out how a football game will go before it’s played is a difficult business. People who think they can figure it out so well that they bet on the outcome have my admiration.

I will try in this space to tell you what I expect from Oregon and Wisconsin Wednesday afternoon in the Rose Bowl, but will do so with the warning that if you are silly enough to make a bet based on my advice, you probably deserve to lose your money.

But that won’t stop me from giving you my opinion and telling you that I’m usually pretty good at this sort of thing.

I expect it to be a real battle in the trenches as two teams attempt to flex their muscles and prove their physicality. Wisconsin has been good at ball control, run defense and wearing down its opponents. Oregon is physical, has a balanced attack, solid defense and is capable of beating teams with the pass.

Two very good football teams.

First, a quick look at Wisconsin:

  • The Badgers had four shutouts this season and rank 10th in the country in scoring defense, eighth in total defense and eighth in rushing defense.
  • Wisconsin lost three games, but two of them were to Ohio State – one of the best teams in the country. You get better by playing, and even losing to, good teams.
  • The Badgers have won five straight bowl games.
  • Wisconsin’s running back Jonathan Taylor is a two-time winner of the Doak Walker Award as the nation’s premier running back. With 1,909 yards this season he’s the only runner in FBS history to top 1,900 yards three years in a row. With 91 yards he can become only the third player to rush for 2,000 yards in multiple seasons. This man is special.

And now a few tidbits about the Ducks:

  • This is the 14th time in the last 15 seasons Oregon has made it to a bowl game. It is 14-18 in bowl games, all time, but has won its last two games at the Rose Bowl, including a 45-38 triumph over Wisconsin in 2012.
  • The Ducks held six teams under 10 points this season, tied for the most in the country.
  • Justin Herbert’s 95 touchdown passes are the most among active FBS players and sixth-most in Pac -12 history.
  • Oregon is ninth in the country in scoring defense and 15th in the country in scoring offense.

So, what does it all mean?

I believe the Ducks are going to have their hands full. Taylor is going to get his yards and if Oregon stacks the line of scrimmage too much to stop him, the Badgers are quite capable of hitting play-action passes for big yardage.

If Oregon struggles with its running game, this game could end up being decided by the arm of Herbert – and his receivers, who haven’t always been dependable. But he will likely have to run for his life part of the game – the Badgers had a school-record 49 sacks this season. I do expect Herbert to throw the ball well in his final collegiate game and it could be the difference.

But the deciding factor in this one is likely going to be at the line of scrimmage. Oregon has been as physical as it has been in years. Wisconsin takes pride in its own brand of physicality.

Is “Pac-12 physical” the equal of “Big Ten physical”? If it is, the Ducks will win.

If not, this one goes the other way.

I have it 24-21, Wisconsin.

‘Mutual interest’ between Wake Forest transfer QB Jamie Newman and Oregon football

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USATI

‘Mutual interest’ between Wake Forest transfer QB Jamie Newman and Oregon football

Justin Herbert has one more day in an Oregon Ducks uniform. 

The hometown hero senior quarterback from Sheldon High School in Eugene, Oregon will play in his final season as a Duck on Wednesday in the 106th chapter of the Rose Bowl. From earning his first career start vs. Washington his freshman year and a 4-8 record in his first year as a starter, to leading the No. 6 Oregon Ducks to the prestigious ‘Granddaddy of Them All,’ it has been one heck of a career for Herbert.

While Herbert’s career will not be forgotten, we can’t help but wonder who will take the reigns of Oregon football next season at quarterback?

Redshirt freshman Tyler Shough? An incoming talented prospect such as Jay Butterfield or Robby Ashford? Or will the Ducks look for someone through the transfer portal? Just maybe…

On Tuesday, it has been reported by Les Johns, that Wake Forest quarterback Jamie Newman has entered the NCAA transfer portal.

Hours later, Newman and Oregon were already linked, reported by Pete Thamel of Bleacher Report:

With the Demon Deacons, the 6-foot-4, 230-pound junior threw for 26 touchdowns and 11 interceptions. Newman became the starter and finished the season with a 3-1 record. He would be able to play right away with one season of eligibilty left.

Newman was a three-star prospect and ranked the No. 4 quarterback from the state of Carolina.

Who will be Justin Herbert's successor next season? Whoever that person may be, there are big shoes to be filled.

Wisconsin gearing up to face a 'physical football team' in Rose Bowl

Wisconsin gearing up to face a 'physical football team' in Rose Bowl

PASADENA – No matter what else you talk about, Wednesday’s Rose Bowl is very likely going to come down to the line of scrimmage. Oregon and Wisconsin consider themselves physical teams with solid line play on both sides of the ball and the battle of the big guys is going to be brutal.

The Ducks, under Coach Mario Cristobal, are trying to shed the Pac-12 (and west coast) image of being soft up front. The Badgers, under Coach Paul Chryst (who had two tours of duty as offensive coordinator at Oregon State under Mike Riley), have made physical offensive-line play and tough defense their calling cards over the last several seasons.

And the Badgers, after studying Oregon on film, have an appreciation for how quickly the Ducks have adapted to a physical style.

“I do see their physicality on fiIm,” Chryst said Monday at media day.  “You can say with confidence that when you watched Oregon this year, they were a physical football team.

“That’s the game of football. We know that doesn‘t just happen. You don’t just put on the helmet and all of a sudden, you’re physical. You’ve got to go out and every play, you do that. A big part of being physical is knowing what you’re doing and knowing how to do it and then players trusting. Then they can cut it loose and play that way.

“Their players know what they’re doing and they play with good technique and they play fast and then they cut it loose. I think that’s truly a sign of coaching – and good coaching. The knowledge of knowing what to do and knowing how to do it and trust that you allow yourself to play physical.”

The Badgers’ tough inside linebacker Chris Orr is impressed with what he’s seen of Oregon’s physicality on the offensive line.

“You definitely see it on film,” he said. “They communicate well together. They work well together.  And they’re moving people at the point of attack. It’s going to be a fun game for me and our defense, because that’s what we want.

“We welcome physicality, we welcome the challenge. At the end of the season, you want to be playing one of the best teams in the nation and they definitely are.”

And do the Ducks remind him of any of the teams in the Big 10? Orr went directly to the top.

“I would say they are a combination of a few teams,” he said. “A combination of Michigan and Ohio State. Schematically, a little bit like Illinois… a little bit of almost everybody, skillset-wise.”

And Oregon’s quarterback, Justin Herbert?

“He has one of the best arms I’ve seen,” Orr said. “He can make all the throws and he doesn’t make too many bad decisions. He’s elusive enough to get out of the pocket. People assume he’s unathletic, but he’s athletic. He can definitely run.”

Oregon wide receiver Johnny Johnson III has caught Wisconsin’s attention

Oregon wide receiver Johnny Johnson III has caught Wisconsin’s attention

Oregon junior wide receiver Johnny Johnson III, quarterback Justin Herbert and linebacker Troy Dye were some of the last Ducks to leave Disneyland, as part of their pre-Rose Bowl tour of Southern California.

It’s fitting that Johnson III’s favorite ride was California Adventure’s The Incredicoaster: a high-speed, thrill ride that chases The Incredibles’ character Jack-Jack through big drops and crazy routes.

In the 106th Rose Bowl, No. 8 Wisconsin’s defense is prepping for a similar mad dash to keep up with Johnson III, who has been on a late-season surge.

Badgers starting cornerback Faion Hicks singled out Johnson III as what makes him most excited for in the “Granddaddy of them All”.

Oregon’s receiver, No. 3, he's a good playmaker. He shows up every game. It's going to be fun going against him. –Faion Hicks

Wednesday will be Johnson III’s last game with Herbert slinging him the ball. The connection between the two has been entertaining to watch, particularly in the past four games where Johnson III has totaled 24 catches for 422 yards and five touchdowns.

When it comes to explosion plays, Johnson III has become Herbert’s go-to. In the last four games, the duo have connected seven times for 25-plus yards, including a 45-yard touchdown reception in Oregon’s Pac-12 Championship victory.

Johnson III is just as consistent as he is exciting. 37 of his 55 receptions in 2019 have gone for first downs. He’s leading the Ducks with 818 yards, nearly quadrupling his total from 2018 (215 yards). What led to his remarkable improvement?

A lot of good habits. A lot of doing the right things and never eliminating doing the little things because that's what keeps you consistent. –Johnny Johnson III

Wisconsin starting safety Eric Burrell was surprised at Oregon’s physicality within the receiving corps.

They aren’t afraid to block. When I look at receivers to game plan, I want to see what their favorite thing is to do. Oregon’s receivers all want to block. That’s good for us. We just have to do a good job at getting off the receivers to make the tackles.  -Eric Burrell

Johnson III takes pride in competing to be the most physical Duck receiver.

We have a knock down list for that week. We always try to get people on the ground. –Johnny Johnson III

No, the list doesn’t compete with Oregon’s exponentially larger offensive line’s knock down list. However right now, Bryan Addison is in the lead with Juwan Johnson and Johnny Johnson III right behind.

Juwan and Johnny have a history of competing and making bets together. In their last game as teammates, they will be vying to get the most touchdowns in the Rose Bowl.

The Rose Bowl is a prime occasion for Herbert to air it out against a Wisconsin secondary that has been inconsistent at times. It’s a substantial opportunity for Johnson III to resume his dominance in the biggest game of his Duck career, where big plays could be the difference maker.