Herbert more concerned about shoulder rehab than contract
CENTURY CITY, Calif. (AP) — Justin Herbert says he's more concerned about rehabbing his left shoulder than a contract extension.
The Los Angeles Chargers quarterback said during the team's draft party on Thursday that he is hoping to be on the field for the team's organized practices in less than a month. Herbert had surgery to repair a torn labrum on his non-throwing shoulder in late January after being injured in a Jan. 1 win over the Los Angeles Rams.
“I think negotiations is a better question for my agent and the front office,” Herbert said. “I think my job now is to focus on being the best quarterback that I can be and to rehab my shoulder and make sure that I can be back for these OTAs and to do everything I can in the building.”
Herbert was second in the league in completions (477) and passing yards (4,739) last season as the Chargers made the playoffs for the first time since 2018. Even though he hasn’t started throwing, he has been spending plenty of time with new coordinator Kellen Moore as the Chargers develop their playbook.
Herbert estimated that his shoulder strength is currently around 70%, and that he anticipates being completely healthy for the start of training camp in late July.
General manager Tom Telesco said during his pre-draft news conference on Monday that there were no updates on negotiations with Herbert's camp.
Cincinnati's Joe Burrow and Miami's Tua Tagovailoa — who were selected before Herbert in the 2020 draft — already have had their fifth-year options picked up. The Chargers are expected to do the same with Herbert next week.
Herbert's agents and the Chargers without a doubt are using the Jalen Hurts and Lamar Jackson five-year contract extensions in their calculations.
Hurts' deal is worth $255 million, including $179.3 million in guarantees from the Philadelphia Eagles. Jackson's contract with the Baltimore Ravens is expected to be $260 million, with $185 million guaranteed.
The Chargers and Herbert would both like to get an extension done before the start of the regular season. But he said he has put that work in the hands of his agents, adding that he wants a deal that works for all sides.
“I kind of leave it up to the people who I hired to work on my behalf because they’re the experts. But obviously providing your input and making sure that everyone knows exactly what you would like from the situation is important,” Herbert said.
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Joe Reedy, The Associated Press