The talk of fantasy football is Los Angeles Chargers Justin Herbert. And we may not have seen the best from this young quarterback. He is poised to have another monster season in 2022. Right now, Patrick Mahomes and Joe Burrow might be ranked ahead of Herbert in fantasy draft order. But for how long?
Fantasy Football 2022 Season Preview: Justin Herbert
In his two seasons as the Chargers starting quarterback, Herbert is one of the best fantasy performers. He has averaged over 26 fantasy points in 32 career starts. Herbert finished second in quarterback fantasy points as he trailed only Josh Allen in the category last season. Overall, Herbert was a top-five-point producer in eight of the 17 weeks played in most fantasy leagues. The only other quarterback with more top-five finishes was Tom Brady with nine.
In 2021, he threw for 5,014 passing yards with 38 touchdowns and 15 interceptions in 17 starts. Herbert finished with a 69.9 percent completion rate. The Chargers offense gained 7.5 yards on each of his completed passes from him. Herbert’s statistical numbers benefited greatly from having 672 passing attempts (second-most in the NFL) last season.
In 2021, the second-year quarterback finished as a certifiable top-five fantasy performer. Brady and Herbert led the NFL with nine 300-yards+ passing games. Let’s not forget that the young star has thrown over 300 yards in half of his NFL career starts. Granted, Herbert is not an elite running quarterback, but he rushed for 302 yards with three rushing touchdowns last season. Not bad for someone who scouts felt could struggle to gain a yard or two in short-yardage situations.
Critics questioned if Herbert could duplicate his outstanding rookie season. He did one better by outperforming all of the top passing stats in 2021. You can count the number of quarterbacks heading into their third season with back-to-back 30+ touchdown passing seasons on one hand. And that number should go up as the Chargers offensive line has been upgraded this off-season. If Herbert gains more time in the pocket, he will complete more passes to wideouts Keenan Allen and Mike Williams or lead back Austin Ekeler coming out of the backfield. It is not out of the realm of possibility that Herbert has another outstanding statistical season in 2022.
Last season, the Chargers finished as a top-six offense. It is safe to assume the unit will become more efficient in 2022. You cannot overlook that Herbert gains another year under the tutelage of Chargers offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi. It allows the young quarterback to get more familiarized with the playbook’s terminology. OTAs and minicamp give Herbert time to focus on his deficiencies within the Chargers passing game. The off-season workouts help Herbert get his timing down with his key receivers
Average Fantasy Draft Position
The 2021 season confirmed that Herbert is an elite quarterback. If you take a closer look at the data, you did everything expected from a franchise fantasy player. Herbert is a traditional pocket passer who looks for the big throw downfield. Few of his contemporaries of him can match his arm strength or accuracy in the pocket. No question, Herbert is a top-three quarterback in any owner’s fantasy player draft list.
It is clear that Herbert is among the top fantasy performers and should be a top choice in upcoming league drafts for the 2022 season. In a fantasy football draft, this much upside must be taken within the first three rounds. The selection of Herbert carries more weight than other draft candidates because of his point potential this season. His weekly value of him could be as high as 30 points in 2022.
For any fantasy owner, it is wise to select Herbert early in the draft. Serious draftniks know there are only a handful of players who have the potential of leading their league in fantasy point totals. Herbert is one of those players.
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