July 29, 2021

What we learned from Chargers’ win over Raiders on Thursday night

Justin Herbert shined as he’s done for all of his rookie campaign, while another former Oregon first-round pick, Marcus Mariota, came on in relief of an injured Derek Carr to put on an impressive performance, as well. AFC West rivals the Las Vegas Raiders and Los Angeles Chargers played into overtime on a dramatic Thursday night, but it was Herbert who commanded the final spotlight — and highlight. Herbert’s quarterback sneak in overtime propelled the Chargers past the Raiders, 30-27.

Los Angeles Chargers 30, Las Vegas Raiders 27 (OT)Justin Herbert seems to have dazzled since his first NFL snap and Thursday night hardly went off script. All is not lost in this Chargers season, as they have struck upon hope for the future and their franchise quarterback with Herbert. Though the Chargers (5-9) are headed toward a second-straight losing season, Herbert captained his second-straight game-winning drive and finished the game with a QB sneak. He’s made Bolts games entertaining watches and provided excitement for what may come for the franchise. The frontrunner for AP Offensive Rookie of the Year, Herbert has been a first-season phenom, with an arm equal parts long and accurate. He reads defenses at a veteran level and commands the Bolts offense like an old pro. Herbert was scintillating through the air, throwing for 314 yards and two touchdowns — giving him 27 on the season and tying him with Baker Mayfield for the most in a rookie campaign. The Chargers ridiculously went conservative and away from Herbert’s golden arm in the second half, but after withstanding two missed Mike Badgley field goals and the Raiders taking a field-goal lead in OT, Herbert rallied them to victory. A 53-yard beauty of a throw to Jalen Guyton set up the game-winner, though it only came after Herbert fumbled into the end zone and was given a second shot at a game-winning sneak. He made good this time. Three touchdowns on the night and plenty of excitement to come. Herbert’s somehow made a disappointing Chargers season remain stirring. He was the star of the show on Thursday and should be for the Chargers for autumns to come.

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