Justin Herbert by Paul Duncan
Short Accuracy: 6 Deep Accuracy: 5 Throw Power: 7 Decision Making: 6
Frame: 7 Pocket Awareness: 5 Athleticism: 7 Playmaking: 5 Clutch: 6
(Explanation of grades can be found here.)
Games Watched: vs Auburn (B) vs Washington State (B) @ USC (B) @Washington (C)
Strengths: Herbert will come into the league with all the arm talent you need. He can push the ball 50 yards downfield with ease. He has the velocity to hit deep outs and curls from the opposite hash. Occasionally makes jaw-dropping throws. He is a good athlete who can be a threat on rollouts, scrambles and read options. He’s a big guy with enough speed to outrun defensive linemen and occasionally linebackers at the college level. He is a tall guy with a sturdy frame. Herbert consistently shows good placement on short passes. He is a conservative passer who rarely throws interceptions. He is a clutch QB who led come from behind victories against Washington and Washington State. Makes plays happen when rolling to his right. He’s smart off the field as he has a 4.01 GPA. Won the Campbell Trophy which recognizes the player with the best combination of academics, community service and on-field performance.
Weaknesses: Accuracy dips when he tries to go deep or attack the intermediate parts of the field. Overthrows passes at times. Sometimes forgets his mechanics when under pressure. Can look uncomfortable in the pocket. Can overreact to react to pressure that isn’t there. Rarely steps up in the pocket. Not a good player out of structure. Often looks confused when his first read isn’t there. Would prefer to take sacks rather than attempt risky throws. Struggles rolling out to his left. Eyes tend to lock on to his primary receiver.
What we need to learn about him: It’s difficult to know how he’d due under consistent pressure because he has a great offensive line in front of him. A lot of his throws are to his first read so we don’t know how well he would be at going through progressions. Doesn’t throw many crossing routes so we don’t know how well he puts touch on the ball or how well he leads receivers to space. Rarely throws into tight windows.
Scheme and Tendencies: Justin Herbert plays in a run first offense that plays exclusively from the gun or the in pistol. The offense runs lots of screens and plays with predetermined reads. Most of Herbert’s throws are short and by the numbers. His most common route types he throws are out-breaking routes and curls. Doesn’t throw much over the middle. The team runs a lot of deep dropbacks off play action.
Injury History: 2018: Was placed in concussion protocol after his October 27th game. Did not miss a game. Suffered a deep bruise on his right shoulder on November 23rd. Didn’t finish the game.
2017: Broke left clavicle his sophomore year. Missed 5 games.
2014: As a junior in high school, broke his femur. Missed the entire season.
Summary: Justin Herbert has all the arm talent and athleticism to be a successful starter but needs to improve his accuracy down the field and awareness in the pocket to be effective in the NFL.