Every time Justin Herbert dropped back in the pocket, the rookie continued to look more and more like a seasoned veteran who has been playing on Sundays for years. Herbert threw for 366 yards and three touchdowns in the Chargers 34-28 defeat over the New York Jets.
“Winning is always sweet,” said the young quarterback with a smirk. “Regardless of what number it is, winning is always the best feeling.”
The Chargers first drive of the game stalled around midfield leading to a punt. Los Angeles attempted to pin the winless Jets against their own end zone. New York blocked the punt leading to a 5-yard touchdown run by Jets running back La’Mical Perine.
Late in the first quarter, Los Angeles’ defense switched the momentum in a much needed way. Tevaughn Campbell came up big for the Bolts with a 6-yard pick-six touchdown.
“The pick-six was huge and that’s what we needed from our defense,” said Chargers Head Coach Anthony Lynn. “Kudos to Tevaughn he did a hell of a job.”
Early in the second quarter Herbert found his towering wideout Mike Williams for a 39-yard touchdown strike putting the Bolts ahead 14-6 in the first half.
The first half scoring wasn’t over. Herbert connected with his trustworthy tight end Hunter Henry for a 2-yard adding to Los Angeles’, lead 21-6. The Bolts capped off a near perfect first half on a Michael Badgley 44-yard field goal extending the lead 24-6 at halftime.
The touchdown connection to Hunter Henry gave Justin Herbert his seventh consecutive game with two or more passing touchdowns, the most all-time by a rookie. Herbert is also on pace for the rookie touchdown and yardage record.
“I just try to win games. Records are great but as long as we’re winning games and doing things right on the football field that’s what is most important,” said Herbert confidently.
“He studies his tail off as far as game planning,” emphasized Lynn on his quarterback. “We had a good week of work and he went out and played well.”
Veteran wideout Keenan Allen hauled in 16 catches for 145 yards and a touchdown, settling in as Herbert’s favorite receiver out of the slot.
“Keenan inside in the slot is very rare to be that big and quick inside and we took advantage of their slot defender,” mentioned Lynn postgame.
The Jets scored three touchdowns in the second half on a Breshad Perriman 49-yard touchdown catch, Frank Gore 1-yard touchdown run, and Chris Herndon’s 6-yard touchdown catch that seemed to have the makings of another close loss.
“They weren’t just going to go down, this is the NFL. They made plays,” said Lynn emphatically.
The Bolts will look to continue adding to their win column with a matchup against the Bills in Buffalo next Sunday.