Justin Herbert hasn’t taken a single snap in the NFL yet, but that doesn't stop people from realizing his potential.
The former Pac-12 champion and Rose Bowl Offensive MVP was selected by the Los Angeles Chargers with the sixth pick overall in the 2020 NFL Draft. Since then, players and pundits have weighed in on the tremendous ability in the Oregon QB.
NBC Sports’ Chris Simms sees it, too.
On Wednesday, Simms released a portion of his Top-40 quarterbacks in the NFL heading into the 2020-2021 season.
Here are 40-36:
40. Tua Tagovaila (Dolphins)
39. Dwayne Haskins (Redskins)
38. Mitchell Trubisky (Bears)
37. Justin Herbert (Chargers)
36. Taysom Hill (Saints)
Simms adds, “We discussed during PFT Live the things that makes Herbert potentially special, and the areas in which he potentially needs to improve — including one very specific mechanical enhancement from which Herbert and every other young quarterback who isn’t doing it would benefit. (Trust me, it works.)
There’s no guarantee that Herbert will become a franchise quarterback, but there are plenty of reasons to be optimistic. That's enough to get him a spot in the Top-40 before he has ever officially stepped foot on an NFL field.
Here are some of the reasons to be optimistic.
- The defense to back Herbert up: The Chargers return three Pro Bowl defensive players in 2020: Defensive ends Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram III as well as safety Derwin James.
- The receiving weapons: Lining up on the outside of Herbert are eight-year veteran Keenan Allen and four-year veteran Mike Williams, both of which posted 1,000+ receiving yard seasons in 2019.
It may be some time until we see Herbert’s NFL debut as a Charger, due to the coronavirus pandemic, but the hype and potential surrounding the hometown hero from Eugene is most definitely present.
Be sure to check out the latest Talkin’ Ducks Podcast with host Jordan Kent and special guest Oregon Strength & Conditioning Coach Aaron Feld.