In Justin Herbert, Philip Rivers sees a more than worthy successor as the Los Angeles Chargers' franchise quarterback.
In an interview on Crain & Company (via Pro Football Talk's Michael David Smith), Rivers said he still roots for the Chargers and Herbert by extension. He hopes the 2020 first-round pick can be a mainstay with the team just as he was:
"I pull like crazy for the Chargers, and I pull for Justin Herbert in particular, just because I think it's awesome that I was able to be there for 16 years," he said. "Hopefully he can be there for another 16. I always thought it's cool—you look at the Packers, you can say, 'Who's been their quarterback the last 40 years? [Brett] Favre and [Aaron] Rodgers.' You don't want it to go the Browns' version, with 30 starters in the last 25 years. With Herbert, it was time for me to be done there, and then they nailed that pick."
Herbert might even be the rare instance in which a team found an upgrade over its longtime signal-caller.
Through two seasons, he has thrown for 9,350 yards and 69 touchdowns. He's averaging more yards (292.2 per game) than Rivers (260.0) with a better completion rate (66.2 percent) and a higher passer rating (97.9).
The Chargers seemed to be entering a period of uncertainty when Rivers left as a free agent in 2020. Luckily for them, the Miami Dolphins passed on Herbert and allowed the Oregon star to fall into their laps.