Justin Herbert All-22 Film Review: The future of the NFL is here

Justin Herbert requires an All-22 film review. He's the modern mold of an NFL quarterback, and he has "best in the game" physical abilities.

Justin Herbert is one of the most physically gifted quarterbacks to play in the NFL over the past few decades, and his All-22 film review showed that — and more. However, physical gifts can only take a QB so far, as early-career Josh Allen and three of the five rookie quarterbacks can attest to. Herbert put it all together immediately, forcing draft analysts everywhere to re-evaluate how they do things. But the Los Angeles Chargers‘ game against the Cowboys was proof he’s young and can still improve.

Justin Herbert All-22 Film Review: The physical tools are mind-numbing

What if I told you Herbert is more athletic than Allen? Despite having a slower 10-yard split, Herbert’s 40-yard dash time was 0.07 seconds faster than Allen’s. He was also more explosive in his jumps and weighed just one pound less. However, most observers didn’t account for Herbert’s athleticism because he so rarely uses his legs as a weapon or a crutch.

Although he doesn’t employ his legs often, plays like this prove Herbert can use them in a pinch — and that maybe the Chargers offense should utilize them more in high-leverage situations.

This play also shows that Herbert is still young. This was a third-and-long, and if he does nearly anything but slide here, he’ll pick up the first down while still avoiding a hit. However, it was early in the game, and I’d like to think that he’d convert the first down in a higher leverage situation.

The arm talent, it’s everywhere

This throw is absurd, and the next one I use as an example is even nuttier. This is a 41-yard throw from outside the right hash to the left numbers, and it’s on a taut string. But that’s not all.

Cowboys cornerback Anthony Brown is on the opposite sideline with overtop leverage against tight end Jared Cook. If Herbert leads this throw too far to the sideline, it’s — at a minimum — a broken-up pass. Instead, he has enough velocity to throw to the inside shoulder and still not allow safety Malik Hooker to drive on the ball in time.

You can count the number of quarterbacks that can do this on the hand of a drunken, clumsy woodworker. This is pure, unadulterated arm talent.

I see your ridiculous cross-field throw and raise you a honey hole shot 40+ yards downfield. Having the chutzpah to make this throw is impressive. Having the ability to make this throw is earth-shattering.

Herbert has no business possessing this sort of weaponry. I’m not sure why he isn’t required to register his right shoulder with the ATF.

His arm is special, and prospects like Herbert and Allen are the proof of why arm strength matters. If the mental side of his game develops, the sky is the limit.

Justin Herbert All-22 Film Review: Executing leverage reads

This throw may seem innocent enough, but it shows something that some young quarterbacks struggle with early in their careers. The speed of the game at the NFL level is different, and the leverage reads some signal-callers made in college won’t work in the NFL.

Here, Herbert sees that Cowboys defensive backs Damontae Kazee and Trevon Diggs both have shoulders facing toward the hashes. As such, the Chargers QB can anticipate a throwing hallway on the out route. If Diggs doesn’t carry Keenan Allen’s route that far inside, Herbert can throw it to the inside.

This is the confusion that bunch formations can cause. This looks like Cover 3, but for some reason, Diggs keys on the third option — in this instance, Allen. I assume Diggs was expecting to carry Allen vertically, but by the time the Dallas corner drives inside, Joshua Palmer has already uncovered on the out route.

Poise in the pocket

Even under pressure, Herbert has been solid. Although LA’s offensive line has protected him admirably, he’s shown few struggles even when under duress. Herbert hangs tough, and his physical abilities allow him to make plays off-script.

Here, despite two free rushers bearing down, Herbert keeps his eyes downfield and sees the rub route did its job — opening the passing window over the middle. While he could have tried sprinting out of the pressure, he instead buys time and throws a fadeaway over the middle that allows for yardage after the catch.

Seasoning can make Herbert a top-tier quarterback

The Chargers bet big on a quarterback with ridiculous physical tools. They had to do that because the best quarterback in the NFL plays in their division.

Herbert hasn’t reached the upper echelons of quarterback play, but he is well on his way. He’s made a few mistakes that can be chalked up to youth and playmaking. If he continues to improve the mental aspect of his game, Herbert has the potential to be a top-two quarterback in the NFL. He might never find the creativity of Patrick Mahomes, but he has the potential to achieve unbelievable heights.

Listen to the PFN Inside Access Podcast!

Listen to the PFN Inside Access Podcast! Click the embedded player below to listen, or you can find the PFN Fantasy Podcast on iTunes, Spotify, and all major podcast platforms.  Be sure to subscribe and leave us a five-star review!

Related Articles