Oct. 8 (UPI) — Los Angeles Chargers head coach Anthony Lynn on Thursday named rookie quarterback Justin Herbert the team’s starter for the remainder of the season.
Lynn previously said that Tyrod Taylor, who was sidelined after a team doctor accidentally punctured his lung while administering a painkilling injection, would retain his starting job when he returned to full health. But after Herbert’s strong performances over the past three weeks, Lynn reversed course and will move forward with the rookie signal-caller.
“He impressed from the very beginning,” Lynn said of the 22-year-old Herbert. “This young man is going to continue to get better and I know we can win with him. I believe that.
“I didn’t take that decision lightly. It’s not a decision where he’s going to be looking over his shoulder. … He’s our quarterback.”
Lynn told reporters Thursday that Taylor didn’t take the decision well, noting that “he’s a competitor.” But the coach believes Taylor will continue to mentor the younger Herbert this season.
In three games this season, Herbert — the No. 6 overall pick in this year’s NFL Draft — has completed 72% of his passes for 931 yards, five touchdowns and three interceptions. He has added 12 carries for 47 yards and one rushing score.
Taylor, 31, completed 53.3% of his throws for 208 yards in one start this season.
Herbert’s next start will be his first on Monday Night Football, coming against the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
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Cincinnati Bengals’ Giovani Bernard (L) is tackled by Jacksonville Jaguars’ Joe Schobert on Sunday in Cincinnati, where the Bengals won 33-25. Photo by John Sommers II /UPI | License Photo