Chargers head coach Jim Harbaugh called quarterback Justin Herbert a "crown jewel" early in his introductory press conference on Thursday and he's not the first person to marvel at Herbert's football ability.
Herbert's first two NFL head coaches haven't been able to turn that ability into enough wins, however, and that's a big part of the reason why Harbaugh will be the third one to get a crack at hitting it big with the quarterback. Later in the press conference, Harbaugh said that the drive to make sure that he succeeds on that front is a big motivator for him as he gets used to his new job.
"I’m gonna get to where I’ve watched every one of his NFL throws. Every one of his snaps. The thing’s that’s jumping out is just this enormous talent," Harbaugh said. "I’m waking up like real early in the morning these days, going 'I gotta bring it, I gotta bring my A game in every sense of the word.' . . . I’m excited about the challenge. Let’s see if I’m man enough, a good enough coach so that all his hard work can be realized. I want to work really hard so that his hard work can be realized."
Herbert wasn't the only player that Harbaugh said he wants to be "worthy of coaching." Safety Derwin James and left tackle Rashawn Slater are also in that category, but there's little doubt that Herbert's success will have an outsize impact on how Harbaugh's run at the one trophy that’s eluded him in his coaching career plays out.