Justin Herbert has had five different offensive schemes in seven seasons, dating to his time at the University of Oregon. For the first time in three NFL seasons, he hasn’t spent the offseason learning a new playbook.
Chargers coach Brandon Staley expects that to help Herbert take more ownership of the offense in 2022.
“As a young player, especially at that position, there’s so much that you experience for the first time,” Staley said, via Eric Williams of Fox Sports. “Every time you go out there, there’s going to be something that you learn.
“Now, he has two full years of experience. One full year of experience in our system, where I think he can translate that situational awareness even faster. He can really be the lead and run the show. I know that’s what he’s after, to really command that position to the fullest.”
Instead of learning a new system, Herbert has spent the offseason focusing on his footwork and throwing mechanics with Chargers quarterbacks coach Shane Day and his private quarterbacks coach, John Beck of 3DQB.
He also “has been getting after it” in the weight room with strength and conditioning coach Jonathan Brooks and now weighs 245 pounds.
Herbert threw for a franchise-record 5,014 passing yards and 38 touchdowns last season in earning starting Pro Bowl honors. But only 24 years old, Herbert still has room to improve.
“The biggest thing is understanding that we’re miles ahead of where we were last year,” Herbert said. “Last year, we were focusing on calling the right plays in the huddle and making sure everyone was lined up in the huddle and getting lined up on the field. Guys have tons of film to look back on from last year, and we’re farther ahead of where we thought we were going to be.”